Long distance relationships are hard. First, obviously, there’s the distance. Then there is the worrying, the fussing, and the concern that your significant other is going to movies without you. Fear and recrimination follow and anger results and things fall apart. Pillow Talk by LittleRiot hopes to solve that.
The product, which is launching on Kickstarter soon, is a wearable that transmits your heartbeat through a little speaker that you hide inside your pillow. When you place your head on said pillow you can hear the primary muscle in your partner’s human circulatory system do its tireless work, thereby offering the illusion of closeness no matter how far apart you are.
Created by Joanna Montgomery, the product was a university project turned viral. She raised a seed round of about $200,000 and is looking for funding to complete product design so she can begin crowdfunding.
“What we’re trying to do in the long run is change the way people use technology to communicate. We want it to be about discrete connections and a sense of presence, not about staring at a screen,” she said.
The product hit 43,000 Facebook fans and 45,000 mailing list sign-ups when it went viral in 2012. Now Montgomery is working hard to make it real.
“I studied interaction design at university and I was looking at how humans interact with technology — and with each other, using technology. I realised that other than actually having a phone conversation, everything else involves a screen and that sucks,” she said. “There aren’t any ways that technology enables us to feel a sense of the other person’s presence, so that’s what I’m trying to do with Pillow Talk. I want people to feel a connection with their partner without having to actively engage with them.”
Sounds like a match made in cybernetic heaven.