This Device Lets You Feel Virtual Reality Pain in Real Life

A Japanese startup is trying to blur the line between reality and virtual reality with technology that allows the wearer to feel the pain experienced inside the metaverse in real life.

H2L Technologies, a Sony-backed technology company based in Tokyo, recently unveiled a wristband that dishes out small electric shocks whenever the wearer suffers pain-inducing damage in the much-hyped metaverse. The device is supposed to do a lot more than that, including mimicking a range of sensations from catching a ball to a bird pinching the wearer’s skin, as well as conveying weight and resistance. It’s all meant to make the metaverse this immersive experience that the people and companies involved in its creation have been pushing over the last year or so.

“Feeling pain enables us to turn the metaverse world into a real [world], with increased feelings of presence and immersion,” H2L CEO Emi Tamaki told Financial Times.

Tamaki reportedly came up with the idea of using haptic feedback technology after going through a near-death experience earlier on in life, due to a serious cardiac condition.

“I realized life was precious so I decided to work on a new field that I really wanted to dig into, as there was no one doing research at the time,” the Japanese executive said, adding that she believed haptic tech would liberate humans from all constraints of geography, physiology and time by 2029.

As scary as the above might be for some, for people like Emi Tamaki, and others living with debilitating chronic conditions, this kind of technology and the metaverse itself must sound truly liberating.


“People like me, who cannot go out often because I don’t have enough muscle due to heart disease, can travel anywhere, anytime,” Tamaki explained.