The prospect of a hyper-realistic feeling a virtual reality (VR) object sliding back-and-forth between your fingers has been raised by the development of a new hand-held VR device.
The SpinOcchio controller, developed by the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology’s MAKinteract Lab, is designed to replicate the feeling of a virtual object moving between pinched fingers. It uses flat spinning discs against the skin of the wearer’s fingers to create the sensation, with the discs able to pivot in synch with the movement of the virtual object.
The researchers behind the SpinOcchio used the examples of a soda bottle slipping through fingers, or a potter creating an object from clay, to convey the kind of experiences their device was designed to replicate in VR.
A demonstration video about the device, which shows virtual fingers closely caressing various solid objects up and down, makes it clear that the SpinOcchio has enormous potential in the sextech field.
Skin-slip haptic mechanisms have been developed for VR before, such as devices that feature spheres that move against the skin. But previous devices have tended not to work for multi-fingered skin slip sensations: something the SpinOcchio is designed to address.
The SpinOcchio does look somewhat clunky and unwieldy, making it tough to imagine using it to get truly immersed in a VR world of finger-slipping erotic pleasure.
But if future incarnations of the device can become more streamlined, it’s easy to imagine how they could be used in conjunction with existing touch-replicating VR equipment, such as haptic clothing and wearable equipment, to create touch-realistic VR sextech experiences.
Various haptic vests, which create touch sensations for the wearer synched with VR experiences, are already on the market – albeit largely marketed for gaming use rather than anything sexual. Haptic gloves, which work on similar principles, are also available.
We’ve been dreaming about the day when we can experience a VR cola bottle slip through our fingers in the metaverse, so here’s hoping that development continues on the SpinOcchio.
Read next: Meta’s AR glasses sound like they’d be pretty good for sextech integration