A new bluetooth-enabled tampon will alert you to when the red sea is going to flood.
The tampons, developed by a startup called My.Flow
, are connected via a smartphone device and will notify individuals before they bleed through their tampon. The product has a six to 12-inch string that is reinforced with medical-grade conductive steel.
It monitors the saturation of the tampon and is connected via a small wearable device that attaches on your waistband or belt. According to The Guardian
“Once you insert the tampon, you thread the end of the string into a wearable device then wirelessly pair the wearable with your phone. Finally you program the app to send you a notification when your tampon is a certain percentage full. The notification can say whatever you like, whether that’s ‘call aunt Flo’ or “you are about to rain down blood on the boardroom floor.”
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The 29-year-old CEO of My.Flow, Amanda Field, had the idea for the device during a class project on wearable technology at UC Berkeley. Field went on to pitch her idea to HAX, the world’s largest hardware accelerator, after graduation. She was sent to China to develop the prototype with friend and future co-founder, Jacob McEntire, who was then working on a “smart vibrator.”
The silent stigma of menstruation in society has made pitching the startup to investors difficult. According to Field, most of the male venture capitalists she met had no idea how a tampon worked. Even older women who are post-menopausal were uncertain whether such a product would be useful.
In addition, it’s not surprising that having bluetooth in your tampon is going to cost you a pretty penny in comparison to your everyday tampon. The one-time purchase of the wearable will cost approximately $49. The companion tampons will be priced “a few dollars more than regular tampons — which already cost women at least $60 a year.”
Field, who is currently in manufacturing talks with a major tampon company, said she “wanted to make sure we weren’t marking up too much, [which is] why we’re going for a lower price point than we could.”
My.Flow has the potential to prevent cases of toxic shock syndrome (TSS) that result from tampons that are left for too long. The product also tracks period history and stores data about the length of your cycles and the changes in your flow. It can provide interesting insight into women’s health as a result.