Myo smart armband's potential teased in new video


Screenshot: "MYO - Wearable Gesture Control from Thalmic Labs" (2013 YouTube, LLC)


, Last Updated: 9:57 AM ET

Thalmic Labs, the Canadian company behind the smart armband, has posted a YouTube clip to show how new uses are being developed for the gesture control gadget ahead of its consumer launch later this year.

When the Myo armband was first announced to the public more than a year ago, the device, which reads electric impulses generated by muscles in the wearer's arm and translates them into gesture commands for digital devices, generated a ton of publicity, and understandably so.

Like a lot of equally high-profile devices that were just being demoed, it promised consumers the chance to use nothing more than gestures to take full control of their digital lives. However, unlike similar products, such as the Leap Motion Controller and Microsoft's Kinect for Windows, with the Myo armband, the user doesn't need to be standing or sitting at a specific location in order to interact with devices via said gestures.


Since the early hype, things have gone quiet as the company behind the gadget, Thalmic Labs, works to develop more and more uses and apps for it. It launched a developer program in July 2013 and the first fruits of it are now being teased in a video, ahead of a consumer launch still pegged for mid-2014. Among other things, the video shows how the Myo can already be used to control a robot, as a remote shutter release for a camera and used in conjunction with the Oculus Rift augmented reality gaming headset.

As exciting as all of these use cases are, potential early adopters will be more interested in Myo-specific apps that will give them control of existing devices such as computers, smartphones, tablets and smart televisions.

The armband controller is available for pre-order now, directly from the Thalmic Labs site for $149.