In the second high-profile technology hardware launch in the last week—North’s Focals debuted last Tuesday—Muse has unveiled their second generation of the Muse headband, a wearable that provides real-time feedback during meditation sessions.
The Toronto-based InteraXon created Muse to act as a personal meditation assistant, providing information on brain activity, body movements, breathing patterns and heart rate during meditation periods. The Muse 2—which is actually the third iteration of the product, after prior releases in 2014 and 2016—uses built-in sensors to create audio experiences to aid users in improving their posture, breathing, and wellness. A companion app allows InteraXon to translate the wearer’s internal states into immersive soundscapes, offering up subtle guidance during calming meditation periods. Muse 2 runs for $299 CAD ($249 USD).
Muse operates using EEG electrodes that rest on the forehead, taking in all kinds of activity and translating it to a digital medium. With that data, Muse can tell a wearer if their meditation session was actually effective.
“Muse has empowered people around the world to improve their understanding of their own brains, and access learning tools to improve their meditation practice,” said Chris Aimone, Muse co-founder and CTO. “We wanted to offer new and improved ways to shed more light into our internal worlds. With these new posture, heart, and breath experiences, Muse 2 opens a wider path of entry into a mindfulness practice, and a robust foundation to support both novice and experienced meditators.”
Another new feature of the Muse 2 is the Mind Experience, a feature that translates mental activity into soothing weather sounds. Research on the new method has proven that Mind Experience can reduce stress in four weeks.
Beyond that, Muse 2 can turn a wearer’s heartbeat into a soothing drumbeat, and the systems machine learning capabilities will adapt to the body’s natural rhythms, delivering personalized results. New lessons and features will be added to Muse 2 after launch, allowing InteraXon to continually improve upon what they are best at.
With Muse 2, InteraXon is trying to prove to competitors that the combination of data and a device can offer the best approach to wellness and meditation. Other companies offer lifetime subscriptions via apps or services, but Muse can obtain real-time data and determine if a wearer is actually relaxed or deep in meditation and the results that process has on the body.