facebook logo
Getty Images / Mladen Atonov

Facebook has agreed to buy tech startup CTRL-Labs in a deal expected to be worth between $500 million and $1 billion, Bloomberg reports.

The US-based startup specializes in wristbands that can read neural activity, potentially determining a person’s thought when they’re not even moving. If the deal is successful CTRL-Labs would join Facebook’s Reality Labs, the social network’s augmented and virtual reality division, with the idea of bringing its mind-reading technology into consumer products.

“CTRL-Labs’s technology is an innovative input that Facebook hopes will be used to significantly improve the upcoming Facebook AR/VR [augmented and visual reality] experiences a few years down the road to fundamentally improve the user experience,” said a Facebook spokeswoman.

CTRL-Labs wristbands can apparently transform brain activity into physical cues. “The wristband will decode those [neural] signals and translate them into a digital signal your device can understand,” wrote Andrew Bosworth, Facebook’s head of AR and virtual reality in a post announcing the deal. “It captures your intention so you can share a photo with a friend using an imperceptible movement or just by, well, intending to.” Such technology could someday become crucial to revolutionizing how we interact with devices.

Facebook recently revealed it was working on AI that would help users pick out outfits and will also be developing AI glasses with Ray-Ban.

Words by Sarah Osei
Staff Writer