Most audio headset makers try to sell gamers on claims of superior sound reproduction and things like positional audio. A startup called Sixth Sense Technology is taking a different approach. Its main pitch to potential backers of its Booster One headset on Kickstarter is that it can boost your gaming skills by replacing certain mouse and keyboard controls with head movements.
The idea came to Sixth Sense Technology founder Iaroslav Neliubov after calculating how much time he spent on repeated actions in Photoshop, such as zooming in and out of an image. By his estimation, it takes 3 to 5 seconds of scrolling a mouse wheel.
"Five seconds x 100 times an hour is 8.3 minutes of scrolling every hour. That means, if you are working for 8 hours, you are spending around an hour a day scrolling the wheel on the mouse in order to zoom. Which is 5 hours a week or 11 days a year just scrolling!," Neliubov explains.
Not everyone spends that much time in Photoshop, obviously, but it led him to think of ways to speed up mundane tasks. Somewhere along the line the idea of using head movements hit him, and so he developed a prototype device that would translate those movements into PC controls.
He decided gaming would be a better application for such a thing, and so the Booster One was born, along with Sixth Sense Technology.
The Booster One is a bit industrial looking compared to other gaming headsets. It has two metal headbands to ensure proper strength, and the earpieces are both made of aluminum. The drivers and other components are stuffed inside a metal housing.
Key to it all is a gyroscope inside to detect head movements. Gamers can customize settings through software for different types of games. If you're playing an RTS, you might turn your head up and down or left and right to scroll the field and look around. In a racing game, you could configure the headset to apply nitro when nodding, while turning your head in a shooter could reload or change your weapon, depending on which way you look.
It's an interesting concept that adds another element of control beyond the popular mouse and keyboard combination, albeit an expensive one—the retail cost is projected to be $359. Super Early Bird backers on Kickstarter can pledge $199 to secure a headset, with a few other discounted tiers once that one fills up.
If you're interested, go here (opens in new tab) to check it out.