Like a diminutive, pantyliner-shaped version of the obelisk from 2001: A Space Odyssey, the latest in wearable tech has appeared upon our horizon, leaving us shrieking and jumping in place confusedly. It's called the OhMiBod Remote App, and it's a vibrator that connects, via Bluetooth, to your smartphone.
Sex toy company OhMiBod unveiled the product — which will retail for a mere $135 — at this year's CES show in Las Vegas. It's due out in March, so gird your loins, ladies. According to the company's website, the vibrator is meant to sit in the front of a matching blue "panty," and it contains a Bluetooth chip, which reacts to input from one's — or one's partner's — smartphone. Users can then use the phone's built-in touch sensors and volume controls to control the vibrator. Other fun things one can do: "favorite" a specific touch pattern and re-use it; convert recorded audio into vibration patterns (your partner can whisper sweet nothings to your inner labia, I guess); sync up the vibrations with a favorite song.
Currently, the panties must be in Bluetooth range of the phone controlling them in order to vibrate (what a seductive sentence that is). However: Brian Dunham, who founded the company with his wife Suki, told Mashable that they expect the app to work long distance "by the summer." This has some fairly interesting implications for how we conceive of intimacy and technology: if teledildonic technology becomes accessible and easy to use, then "phone sex" could become a literal act. But, as Amanda Hess points out at Slate, it's not extremely likely that that'll happen: "Because the sex industry is still stigmatized," she notes, "it's been free to push out lower-quality products because it benefits from the lack of fierce industry competition and public accountability that accompany the design of objects like household appliances and mobile phones."
So, who knows. It's worth noting that this isn't the first Bluetooth-enabled vibrator app to emerge from the Internet's collective unconscious — the Indiegogo-funded Vibease, for instance, is due out later this month — nor will it be the last. With that said, I doubt that even sex toy enthusiasts (or wearable tech enthusiasts) will be casually rocking vibrating panty liners by this time next year.
At the very least, I think we all deserve an episode of Scandal in which a very shadowy government organization communicates via this app in Vibrator Morse Code.
Image via Ruslan Kudrin/Shutterstock.