Over the last days, news was picked up about a headphone startup that had a rather unique selling point. Because next to obviously playing music, these headphones had the capability to let the listeber ‘get high’.
On their website, Nervana is being described as a combination of “science and technology to make an ordinary experience extraordinary, [..] by offering a non-invasive, consumer Vagus nerve stimulator that synchronizes with music.”
The stimulating pulses are created and delivered via a generator unit that acts as a throughput between the earpieces and the music player. The generator then analyses the music signal and generates electrical impulses, which are routed through the headphones in time to the beat.
There’s also an Ambient Mode, tasking the Nervana generator’s internal microphone with modulating output to the Nervana headphone based on sounds from the environment. So any music being played around the user, for example, at a concert, will be the basis for the Vagus nerve stimulation output sent to the user through the Nervana headphone. This means that, in Ambient Mode, all NERVANA users in the same location can experience similar nerve stimulation.
There is no hard evidence backing up the company’s claims as a high-inducing headphone producer. And since the device is being marketed as a lifestyle and wellness device, the company doesn’t need any medical approval. But Nervana does have several MDs on board, and if we are to believe the anecdotal reports from this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas as can be seen above, suggest that there is something going on here.
The company plans to start selling pre-orders for the $299 headphones in the next couple of weeks, with delivery slated for sometime this spring. What do you think? Would you buy one?