Facebook buys ‘mind-reading wristband’ firm CTRL-Labs

Facebook has acquired a start-up which is developing devices that can pick up electrical signals from the brain and transmit them to a computer.

CTRL-Labs has designed a wristband that can identify the signals the brain sends to the hand telling it to move, and decode them.

It could then transmit that command – for example, to press a button – to a computer or other device.

It also “captures your intention”, said Facebook VR president Andrew Bosworth.

“So you can share a photo with a friend using an imperceptible movement or just by, well, intending to,” he said in a post on his personal Facebook page.

Facebook has not confirmed a report by CNBC which claimed that the deal was worth between $500m and $1bn (£0.4bn and £0.8bn).

Mr Bosworth said he hoped the CTRL-Lab team would help Facebook to “build this kind of technology, at scale and get it into consumer products faster”.

There was a mixed response to the news.

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