Nvidia released a beta version of Eye Contact, an AI-powered feature that automatically keeps your eyes in the centre of the frame when you look away from the camera in real life.

The feature ships with Nvidia’s Broadcast app, and the company is eager to hear feedback on improving it. Some users have expressed concern that it appears too unnatural and creepy.

Uncomfortable

Eye Contact replaces your eyes with software-controlled simulated eyeballs that stare directly into the camera. The feature attempts to replicate your natural eye colour and blinking pattern. Critics, however, warn that unbroken eye contact can make for an uncomfortable viewing experience.

Scott Baker, a former TV news anchor, weighed in on the technology. “As a TV news anchor for decades… this is not quite the right approach. To make communication effective… you have to naturally break eye contact with the camera (just as you would in real life) fairly often.”

“The power of eye contact in human communication is deeply researched”, Baker continued. “Locking eyes with someone for more than 7 to 10 seconds is intuitively regarded as creepy or uncomfortable.”

Apple tried to no avail

It’s worth noting that this isn’t the first time a company has attempted to use simulated eyeballs to maintain eye contact during video calls. In 2019, Apple introduced a similar feature in FaceTime. The tech giant faced a negative reception upon launch.

If you’re looking to add some creepiness to your video calls, you can try Eye Contact by downloading Nvidia Broadcast for free from the company’s website.

Tip: HP Presence provides full ecosystem for (hybrid) collaboration