Mental health wearables promise elusive calm

HEAD CASE: Could the Muse headset become an essential tool for stress management? — ©All Rights Reserved/Interaxon Inc. 2014

HEAD CASE: Could the Muse headset become an essential tool for stress management? — ©All Rights Reserved/Interaxon Inc. 2014

After earning nearly double its crowdfunding goal back in 2012, the Muse headband, a self-proclaimed brain-fitness tool for stress management, finished shipping its pre-orders Oct 12 and is now officially on the market.

It’s creating a frenzy of excitement from a consumer market hell-bent on achieving calm-on-command and is to be followed by a slew of upcoming products like it.

The product’s webpage says that just three minutes per day is all it takes to train towards achieving peace and calm and even improving cognitive well-being with improved focus, productivity, motivation and emotional intelligence being among the benefits of managing stress.

Founders of parent company InteraXon have applied electroencephalography (EEG) techniques to a home device, reinventing it under the term “brain sensing.”

The US$299 (RM977) headband connects to a smartphone via Bluetooth and indicates the user’s mental state symbolically by means of the weather on its beach backdrop. From there, it’s up to the user to beat the storm and bring on sunshine and blue skies using the power of his mind.

It’s only one of a wave of mental health wearables, but it’s a pioneer of the trend.

Appearing out of the haze, a wearable based on a similar concept called Thync recently announced having secured 13 million dollars from venture capitalists.

They just might have a good bet considering the Thync team member roster is packed with degrees from highly reputable institutions.is a personal interface for human-computer interaction that uses EEG

INTERESTING: Do-it-yourself EEG headsets like this one from Emotiv are popping up in the consumer market. — ©All Rights Reserved/Emotiv Emotiv EPOC

INTERESTING: Do-it-yourself EEG headsets like this one from Emotiv are popping up in the consumer market. — ©All Rights Reserved/Emotiv
Emotiv EPOC

technology to read the human mind and allow users to express themselves artistically creating colour patterns onscreen and even controlling connected third party electronics.

It can be pre-ordered for US$499 (RM1,631), to ship at the end of October. The company’s other product, the Insight, offers five different EEG channels and interested parties can register to stay informed about its availability, which is estimated in early 2015. — AFP/Relaxnews 2014

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