Microsoft patent shows wearable band with haptic feedback


Microsoft's latest patent application shows the company has worked on a wearable band that would wrap around limbs or joints and use haptic feedback for therapeutic stimulation. Microsoft's wearable wouldn't count steps or measure heart rates, but rather is designed to alleviate symptoms of conditions that affect a person's ability to move or control limbs, such as tremors or stiff muscles caused by Parkinson's disease. The device would have many haptic actuators distributed across a band that can be adjusted in terms of each actuator's "duty cycle" in response to sensor data, according to the patent. That data could come from sensors on the wearable itself or a nearby tablet or phone that communicates with it over Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. For example, Microsoft envisages that sensors in a stylus or a tablet could communicate with a wrist-worn therapeutic device in order to detect involuntary motion of the user when writing.