Meet Immersit, a new kind of connected device for your couch launching today on Kickstarter. Immersit generates vibrations to immerse you in your movies or video games. And it works with your existing couch.
Have you ever been to a theme park with vibrating seats? Immersit is trying to recreate that at home, and it’s not as easy as it seems. Instead of selling a brand new couch, the company has been working on tiny bases that you put below your couch feet. These bases are articulated and can move back/forward, up/down and side-to-side in very little time.
At the center of the couch, a bridge controls each electric motor in the bases to make them work together. A full motion kit currently costs between $565 and $904 on Kickstarter (€499 to €799). There are many use cases for this device, such as pairing your couch with a movie, a video game or even a virtual reality headset.
But there’s one issue. Immersit can’t simulate vibrations in real time. The company had to encode vibrations for a bunch of movies so that it knows when to vibrate if you’re watching the latest Hunger Games movie. The good thing is that the hub automatically detects which movie you’re watching — Immersit is probably using audio fingerprinting.
It’s also worth noting that Immersit works with anything that has four feet, such as a seat or a bed. You can also control the intensity of the vibrations in case you’re about to fall asleep.
And then, there is virtual reality. While a virtual reality headset is much more immersive than looking at a TV, companies have been looking for ways to make VR as immersive as possible with controllers, cameras and treadmills. Pairing Immersit with a VR headset would make sense.
The company expects to ship in December 2016. As always with crowdfunding campaigns, you have to take everything with a grain of salt. Immersit showcased working prototypes at CES but the final product isn’t ready yet. And yet, I can’t wait to watch a car chase on this couch.