SEX

This App Lets You Control A Sex Toy With Your Mind

Developers in France say they have written a program to turn a vibrator on by thinking about it

SEX
Illustration: Tara Jacoby
Feb 06, 2017 at 4:51 PM ET

A mind-controlled vibrator sounds like a high-tech device of the far future — a sex toy for an age when we’ve all given up on human flesh and are having sex with robots. But a version of that reality is already here, according to a couple of French developers. They say they have programmed an app that allows you to remotely control a smart bluetooth vibrator. All you need is your brain, Lovense’s Lush vibrator, a high degree of focus, and a couple of well-placed electrodes.

Developers used OpenBCI, an open-source interface that allows for connection between a person’s brain to a computer via electrodes, and integrated it with Lovense’s API. In a demonstration video, which you can watch below with English subtitles, they outfit a test subject with three electrodes and ask him to close his eyes and focus on the toy sitting on the table in front of him. Instantly, it begins vibrating. “The general idea is to be able to make the toy vibrate by focusing on it, and why not make someone come just by thinking about it,” the tester says in French.

This isn’t the first time someone has tried to sync a sex toy with the mind. A couple years ago, the creators behind the Mod, which stands for Multivibrating Open-Source Dildo, demonstrated that it could similarly be hooked up to be controlled by the mind — as well as, less sexily, with blinking and jaw-clenching. But the crowd funded project was forced to shutdown in response to a patent lawsuit unrelated to the mind-control element.

Why, you might ask, would someone want to control a vibrator with their minds? “Some applications could be for discreet public play, for long distance couples and even for people with physical disabilities,” said Eddy Olivares, marketing manager for Lovense, which gave the developers permission to experiment with their API. Of course, there are also terrifying implications — someone controlling your vibrator without permission — although hacking is a concern for smart vibrators in general, mind-controlled or not.

There are also some major limitations of this app — namely that it doesn’t seem very reliable. On the second try, the tester isn’t able to immediately turn on the sex toy with his mind. But when he gives it another try, it vibrates right off the table. A second tester is only able to get it to come on very intermittently — in a sad, dying sex toy sort of way. So you might not be able to think yourself off with this app, but you can at least think the vibrator on. As the first tester put it, “It’s kind of exhausting, but it really works.”

The app isn’t being distributed or sold, so for now this is just an intriguing demonstration of the weird places that the future might bring us — and our sex toys.