Google reportedly tried to buy a brainwave-reading startup
Not content with voice, visual, or gestural input, Google cofounder Sergey Brin reportedly tried to buy a Toronto-based startup that makes a brainwave-tracking headband. On Thursday, TechCrunch cited an unnamed source close to InteraXon, which makes the Muse headband.
The source reported that Google approached the company, which said it was not interested in getting acquired. Founded in 2009, InteraXon has already attracted $7.2 million in funding, including a Series A Round led by Horizon Ventures last summer that netted $6 million. An Indiegogo campaign through the end of last year pulled in almost $300,000.
Cofounder/chief executive Ariel Garten has said she wants to build a $500 million company within five years. Other companies, such as NeuroSky, are also working on brainwave interfaces.
The headband, expected to be released in May for about $300, uses six EEG sensors to monitor electrical activity in the brain, which the company compares to a heart-rate monitor detecting a pulse. Changes in five brainwave types are detected while a user focuses on specific tasks, and those changes are transmitted as digital signals to an app on a device.