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Want a music system that lifts you up when you’re feeling down? Meet this audio headset with bio-signal sensors (key neurotech patent #48)

Today we are featuring a fascinating patent by NeuroSky, coupling an audio headphone set system with EEG signal detection.

U.S. Patent No. 8,271,075: Audio headset with bio-signal sensors

  • Assignee(s): NeuroSky, Inc.
  • Inventor(s): Cheng-I Chuang, KooHyoung Lee
  • Technology Category: EEG
  • Issue Date: September 18, 2012

SharpBrains’ Take:

The ‘075 patent couples an audio headphone set system with EEG signal detection by integrating an EEG sensor (item 15 in the illustrative image) into the audio earpiece to establish a sensing headset that is unlikely to cause discomfort or otherwise detract from the audio headphone user’s experience. The earpiece sensor is covered by fabric to enhance the user experience, and may be coupled with other EEG sensors for additional brain signal detection, such as the sensor shown by item 17 in the illustrative image.

While presenting what may be considered to be a small number of claims (one independent claim and 11 dependent claims), the introduction of brain signal detection technology (a somewhat relatively uncommon consumer technology) with a commercial audio headset (a relatively common consumer technology) are among the factors that contributed to making the ‘075 patent a key non-invasive neurotechnology patent.

Abstract:

An audio headset with bio-signal sensors is provided. In some embodiments, an audio headset that includes one or more electroencephalography (EEG) sensors is provided.

Illustrative Claim 1. An audio headset comprising:

  • a first side portion of the audio headset having a first earpiece attached to the first side portion so that the first earpiece can be placed on top of, over, or inside a user’s ear when the audio headset is worn by the user; and
  • a first bio-signal sensor positioned inside of the first earpiece that is capable of resting against a skin portion of the ear of the user when the audio headset is worn by the user, wherein the first bio-signal sensor is a fabric electroencephalography (EEG) sensor comprising a strip of conductive fabric wrapped around a portion of the first earpiece for detecting brainwave signals, wherein the strip of conductive fabric includes a fabric EEG sensor and extends radially from a center of the inside of the earpiece to an edge of the earpiece.

To learn more about market data, trends and leading companies in the digital brain health space –digital platforms for brain/ cognitive assessment, monitoring and enhancement– check out this market report. To learn more about our analysis of 10,000+ patent filings–including the one above–check out this IP & innovation neurotech report.

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