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"HACK HAPPINESS"

Afsana Khan

Mood rings have been around since the 1970s, so devices that can sense someone’s mood may not come as a mind-boggling breakthrough to most.

However, New York-based startup Sentio Solutions’ "Feel" has caused quite the stir when launched at the CES 2016 in Las Vegas recently. 

With multiple bio-signal-tracking-sensors, the Feel wristband doesn’t just change colour based on your mood, it analyzes the wearer’s emotional state for prolonged periods of time and helps to improve it.  

The Feel wristband looks and functions almost like a FitBit band. There are four sensors that track galvanic skin response, blood volume pulse, and skin temperature. The collected data is used to analyze one’s emotional state through a downloadable app that comes with the device. 

The mobile application visualizes emotional spikes throughout the day, including what factors affect the wearer’s mood the most and how. If the user is feeling extremely stressed, the wristband vibrates to let him/her know. Besides, based on the emotional states of the user, the app also generates personalized tips from time to time like ‘laugh more’ or ‘meditate’. The app is also programmed to provide long term plans for emotional well being based on data collected for a substantial period of time. 

Calorie counting devices and fitness wearables track voluntary activity. So, claiming to help people be more active is a relatively easier claim for these devices than what Feel is offering to do. Mood swings and stress are spontaneous emotions of the human mind. For a person suffering from depression or experiencing stress due to something particularly serious, it is doubtful that an app buzzing and beeping him/her to exercise or laugh would do much to help. Nevertheless, the device may still be of use to people who tend to suffer from chronic stress in their daily lives and would want to keep their stress levels in check. 

Feel is available in four colours – a turquoise, a fire red, and the basics black and white. The device will be available in stores from December 2016 at USD199 and can be pre-ordered for USD149.

January 21, 2016
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