Thync recently announced $13 million in venture capital from investors such as Khosla Ventures to bring the first products to market.
Marom Bikson, a professor of biomedical engineering at City College of New York, recently used a prototype of Thync’s device in a 100-person study funded by the company that focused on its calming effects. Bikson says the study showed “with a high degree of confidence” that the device has an effect, although the results varied. “For some people—not everyone—the effect is really profound,” he says. “Within minutes, they’re feeling significantly different in a way that is as powerful as anything else I could imagine short of a narcotic.”
The device uses a form of transcranial direct current stimulation TDCS, something that’s been tested in various forms for years but has yet to be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat a specific disease.
In Thync’s device, a barely perceptible electrical current is applied to the skin just behind the ear for the Red Bull effect, and on the temple and back of the neck for the relaxing effect.