Exeposé’s inaugural technology article covers the Foc.us headset which promises “transcranial direct current stimulation for gamers.” Sam Brewer ‘focuses’ (had to be done) on the chances of it finding any success in the gaming market.
A new headset designed to stimulate brain activity has been released for the gaming market. The Foc.us headset releases a small electrical current through the wearers head, which is designed to make the synapses in the brain fire faster. All very high tech I’m sure, but will it actually do anything for the average gamer?
As it happens, I can’t actually tell you, because I didn’t feel like spending £179 of my poor student budget on a piece of funny shaped plastic that was going to send electricity around my head so that my reaction times on Rayman may or may not increase.
You don’t need me to tell you that I’m not the only person approaching this with skepticism though. With that said, the technology used in this attractive little headpiece is impressive, not to mention scientifically proven (its already been used as part of medical treatments for stroke patients and for those with learning difficulties).
There is one thing that seems particularly odd about the Foc.us. This is that it’s being aimed at people who play games. Sure, it’s already been used in the Armed Forced in the US, but as a consumer product, the primary function of this device isn’t to help change the world, or even the way people go about completing annoying tasks; it is to improve your high score on Candy Crush. It makes me wonder if micro-transactions weren’t enough. But in all seriousness, I never realised that so many gamers had enough money to make this a feasible market for such a product, particularly after you look at the big price tags we are having to fork out for current generation consoles.
For some the Foc.us is sure to add to an already ingrained stereotype that depicts gamers as effectively plugged into the games they play. Even though this is a product that does have a proven benefit when gaming and the technology is totally risk free, I simply don’t see it taking off. I can only go back to the price that is far too close to £200 for the casual gamer, as well as many hardcore ones as well.
As with most pieces of technology however, I wouldn’t rule out the price dropping in the next few years, and when that starts to happen, this could be a piece of kit that many will feel the need to add to their collection of gaming peripherals. More significantly though, it wouldn’t be that surprising if in time we see the Foc.us branching out and having a much wider audience than our small niche in console and PC world.
Do you agree with Sam’s predictions? Or do you feel that this piece of tech exploits an exciting niche? You can discuss it in the comments below, but you can also:
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