A tip of the hat to the Raspberry Pi Flick HAT


Pi SUpply Flick HAT

Basically, using the Microchip MGC3130 it supports 3D gesture detection – for example, swipes and flicks – at distances of up to 10cm, potentially providing a more flexible user experience.

The available gestures are:

  • Swipe (east to west, west to east, north to south, south to north)
  • Tap and double tap (center, east, west, north, south)
  • Airwheel (clockwise, anti-clockwise)

It’s made by the Pi specialists Pi Supply and is priced from £17, from the distributors such as RS Components and now Farnell.

This actually comprises a kit, the contents of which include the Flick HAT itself, plastic bolts, plastic spacers, stickers and information cards.

Near field gestures

Pi Supply writes:

Integrate Flick into your Raspberry Pi project to give you multiple ways of controlling it. Using the near field gesture technology, you’re able to hide your project behind non-conductive material (such as wood/acrylic) and still use Flick (please note however that mounting it in this way may reduce the sensor range).

We’ve designed the Flick range to be plug and play, allowing you to be up and running within minutes. Use our software libraries (complete with one line installer) to fully explore what you can do with Flick. Control your computer, TV, music system and more all with a Flick of the wrist!

The Raspberry Pi Flick HAT Case is priced at £13 including VAT.


Technical Details:

  • Chip: MGC3130 3D Tracking and Gesture Controller
  • Detection range: 0 to 15 cm in ideal circumstances
  • Temperature Range: -20? to +85?
  • Position Rate: 200 positions/sec
  • Spatial Resolution: up to 150 dpi
  • Proximity and Touch Sensing
  • Flick Large has a red/green dual colour LED that can be driven using pins LED1 and LED2
  • Flick Large has level shifting on board so can work with any microcontroller with either 5V or 3V3 power and data signals
  • Compatible with the Hillstar Development Kit over USB on PC in order to use with a computer or to program new firmware onto the board.
  • Available gestures: Swipe (east to west, west to east, north to south, south to north), tap and double tap (center, east, west, north, south), airwheel (clockwise, anti-clockwise) and touch (center, east, west, north, south)
  • Works even through the Flick Large case
  • No detection blind spots
  • Low–power design

For even more technical details, such as open source code for its operation, check out the ocmpnay’s GitHub page.