Overwhelming interest in an armband launched last month signals that consumers are ready to embrace gesture commands.
Built by Thalmic Labs, the MYO is an armband, worn above the elbow, which monitors electrical activity in the arm's muscles and translates those signals into commands that it relays via Bluetooth to a computer, smartphone or tablet. In other words, the ultimate remote control.
When it debuted in February it created huge buzz but, one month later, the company has managed to turn that interest into orders, completely selling out of its inital 25,000 units, priced at $149 each.
"We are proud to announce that we have officially sold 25,000 pre-order units of MYO and are taking orders for the next shipment," said Stephen Lake, co-founder of Thalmic Labs. "Our original goal was to sell 7,000 units by the end of March, and instead we sold 25,000 within the first month of its launch. Consumers have really embraced the new technology, and we're working hard to have them in the hands of our first customers later this year."
The first units have been ordered by consumers in 124 countries, attracted by the fact that it can support Windows, Mac OSX, Android and iOS devices.
The MYO is one of a number of gesture interaction devices appearing on the market this year. The Leap Motion Controller, which plugs into a computer's USB port and can accurately identify individual finger movements caused a similar sensation when it was showcased at the end of 2012 and is due to go on sale in May. Likewise, earlier this month researchers at Microsoft demonstrated for the first time how its Kinect for Windows system can now support pinch to zoom and hand gesture controls.