Answers to common eye tracking questions

We hope to answer some of your questions about eye tracking; how to use it for research, how it works, what is eye tracking technology and more...

The human eye

How is eye tracking technology used for research?

Eye tracking is used in research to understand visual attention and human behavior. Because visual attention is strongly linked to cognition (thought processes) it reveals a lot about what’s going on inside someone’s head. Eye tracking research areas and applications are wide and varied, but include scientific research, marketing and user experience studies, and human performance. Scientists use it to study human behavior and increase their understanding of things like child development, psychological conditions, and neurological disorders. Marketers often use eye tracking to study consumer behavior, while manufacturers and other businesses can use it to observe human behavior during various tasks to determine the methods of operation and visual attention that yield the best results.

Areas of application that use eye tracking


screen based eye tracking

How do eye trackers work?

Eye trackers work by directing invisible near-infrared light into a person’s eyes and then measuring the reflection of this light with high definition cameras to determine where their gaze is focused. These cameras and illuminators (the light sources) are usually very small and are positioned inside the eye tracker, as you see with screen-based eye trackers, or they can be integrated into a wearable eye tracker, such as a pair of eye tracking glasses. Advanced algorithms are used to calculate with great precision where the person is looking based on the direction of the reflected light. This information is used in conjunction with the material displayed on the screen or scene recordings taken from the scene camera on a wearable eye tracker to give an accurate representation of what the person is looking at.

Learn more about how our eye trackers work

Computer with heat maps

When to use an eye tracker?

You should use an eye tracker if you want to study where someone is looking. This might be the case if you are studying human behavior within various fields such as psychology, neuroscience, marketing, or human performance. Eye tracking is also commonly used for user experience testing as it gives great insight into how people interact with a website or design.

Read our blog post on eye tracking and UX testing

testing a baby with an eye tracker

Human behavior and eye tracking – how does it work?

Understanding human behavior through the use of eye tracking is becoming increasingly common. Because visual attention is so strongly linked to what’s going in inside our brains, eye tracking is an ideal tool with which to conduct research on human behavior. By observing visual behavior we can enhance our understanding of so many things, such as how babies learn, indicators of neurological disorders, shopping behavior, and task completion.

Read our blog post about eye tracking and human behavior

Fusion eye tracker component board

What is eye tracking technology?

Eye tracking technology includes things such as eye tracking hardware (eye trackers) and software. It could also refer to the components within these things such as eye cameras and illuminators. The benefits of eye tracking technology include the ability to track someone’s gaze and in turn glean information into their mental processes. The use of eye tracking technology is very common in a range of fields such as psychology, neuroscience, and marketing to study human behavior and cognition.

Find out more about our technology

Accuracy & Precision

Eye Tracker Tests

Tobii runs numerous eye tracker tests to ensure our products perform to an optimal standard. We have developed a comprehensive test method to confirm the quality of data that our systems produce. The method takes into account a variety of scenarios and users and clearly outlines accuracy and precision metrics as well as experimental procedures under variant conditions so you can easily understand and interpret the specifications.

View the Tobii Pro eye tracker test methods and reports