The Myo Armband by Thalmic Labs is a device you can wear on your upper arm that can connect with various devices and applications so that you can take control of them in a more human way. This device is a one size fits all due to the design incorporating plastic so as to ensure that all of the mechanical components can be spaced out from one another.
The Myo Armband works by using eight electromagnetic sensors that are able to read signals passing through your muscles as you wear it. By knowing how your muscles are relaxed and constricted on your upper arm, it is able to accurately tell what you are doing with your hand and wrist—to an extent of course.
The Myo armband works on Windows and Mac as well as on iOS and Android Devices. The control settings for the Myo consist of flexing your wrist towards or away from your body, tapping your middle finger and thumb together twice, or creating a fist and then rotating it, giving you an analogue selection of modifiers perfect for things like volume.
On Desktop, the Myo has a variety of different uses from controlling games, to watching media and even for giving professional looking presentations. Some games that have official support for the Myo include Saints Row IV and Race the Sun; there are even some games designed specifically for the Myo like Drunk Painter and Kaiju Carnage. Media services that have controllers for the Myo include iTunes, VLC, and even popular Media Center program Kodi (Formerly XBMC). For presentations it allows users to delivers their speech while controlling the movement of the slides, as well as granting them additional features, such as the ability to create a red point on the screen that is controlled by your hand movements as well as zoom into slides to give people a better view.
If you are wanting to use it on mobile, then the Myo simply gives you options to control the music on your device, allowing you to change things like volume, skip tracks, play, and pause. One of the best things about the Myo is that for the simple things it works perfectly—these include all of the motions that have trigger connections, such as starting music or moving to a new slide. The area that it still isn’t quite doing as great a job is when you use the Myo to control a pointer across the screen, such as a mouse, laser point, or even a kaiju claw while destroying a town.
There are some sensitivity issues in these motion controls where you always overshoot your target and have to loop back around. While it isn’t the worst thing in the world, this just highlights that for something like this to be the next step, it needs to be as friendly and accurate as what we currently have, as well as take no extra effort. One issue I have also found is having people understanding that the Myo doesn’t work like other motion devices like the Wiimote, so they make weeping gestures instead of changing the angle of their wrist, which is needed for the armband.
You can order a Myo Armband via their Official Store Page.
The Myo Armband was purchased by the reviewer.
The Myo armband, while being touted for games, presentations and general use seems to shine the most when used for presentations.