IEEE Spectrum has the story on a wearable with mood altering capabilities from startup, Thync. By utilizing a painless, low intensity electrical current, different areas of the brain are stimulated on the wearer’s head to enhance feelings of focus, alertness, or calm. The gadget is currently in testing and the company hopes to eventually make is available to consumers.
Thync has been in stealth mode for three years; it pulled back the curtains on Wednesday, announcing that it has raised $13 million from Khosla Ventures and other investors, and intends to give other mind-altering substances like caffeine and alcohol some serious competition.
Thync says it is using “neurosignalling,” that is, a form of transcranial direct-current stimulation designed to shift a person’s brain waves in order to make her feel more energized or more relaxed. The company has tested the gadget, which goes on the head, not the wrist, on 2000 people to date. It has approval to do such research, but getting broader approval to put the device on the open consumer market may take a while.
Thync’s technology was developed at Harvard and Stanford; the company was founded by Isy Goldwasser, a serial entrepreneur who also founded Symyx Technologies, and Jamie Tyler, an associate professor of Biological and Health Systems Engineering at Arizona State University. Thync’s website doesn’t offer a lot of detail; it states “Thync Vibes are intelligent waveforms delivered via neurosignaling. You select Vibes on-demand for your shift to an energized, relaxed or focused state.”