The dawn of a new technosexual age is upon us.
At least that’s what FriXion co-founder Seth suggests when talking about the adult social platform now launching in beta. The first round of invites is going out soon, beckoning people to test out the community and have sex with robots — albeit small ones.
“It can honestly, no joke, it can change the world,” Seth said over Skype.
He spoke on a voice call, without video. The choice is not surprising considering Seth won’t share his full name with journalists. His partnerships don’t want their clients knowing they are involved in adult entertainment.
“It’s still very 20th century thinking. I don’t agree with it, but accommodate,” he said.
How to Hookup on FriXion
On FriXion beta, six devices can be used to get it on remotely with one or many partners at the same time. Users may click keyboard and mouse controls to operate distant sex toys.
Or pump the Interactive Fleshlight [NSFW], the Fleshlight accelerometer [NSFW], and the Virtual Sex Stroker [NSFW] to share erotic sensations over the web. Lovers linked over the site will receive these movements and can send their own back. If a run-of-the-mill dildo doesn’t suit, the high-powered Diltron sex machine [NSFW] is also an option.
Yet of them all, Seth is most excited about the F1 robot — a touch controller formerly known as the Novint Falcon. It acts as a connector between devices.
He describes the F1 as a 3D force feedback mouse roughly the size of an American football. It was originally used in shooting video games like Call of Duty and Battlefield. With its many removable grips, the robot simulated the recoil of a gun by pushing a person’s hand back after firing the trigger.
Image source: giraffebacon
Instead of wielding violent attachments, the robot’s new purpose is to hook up to sex toys and external sensory devices. When in action, they control each other’s movements in push-and-pull motions that replicate live sex.
What makes the F1 further stand out is how it removes the need for using hands, making remote sex even more realistic.
“All you got to do is put the Fleshlight on one end, the dildo on the other side, and you are now connected. Instead of at your hand, you’re connected at your genitalia,” Seth said.
“That’s actually quite an uncanny experience.”
The F1 robot’s stroke length is just over 3 inches and has millimeter accuracy. Its lag time ranges from 100 to 400 milliseconds, and it pushes with about 1.5 kilograms of force.
“It’s enough to penetrate small to medium toys down a well-lubricated passage, but it’s not going to bruise you or hurt you,” Seth said.
To see how the F1 robot can interact with several sex devices, check out the video below.
Mixing Haptics with Virtual and Augmented Reality
While beta users can only access a handful of devices, the network’s open API could make this number jump up drastically.
This means developers will be able to create plugins allowing different sex toys and controllers to sync up with FriXion and interact with others online.
But hardware is just the beginning. Bringing virtual words into the realm of sex simulators could happen in the next few months.
Seth said FriXion plans on working with Utherverse, the creators of the 3D adult world Red Light Center. He hopes to have a demo ready for June that will allow people to animate as well as feel the sexual motions of their avatars in the computer-generated environment.
In fact, Seth has a lot of visions for the future of teleldildonics. He imagines bringing silicone sex dolls to life with interactive stroking devices like the Fleshlight. Then, adding in augmented reality by projecting the face of someone from a webcam over the doll’s head.
FriXion has already experimented with overlaying computer-generated images on the F1 robot, Seth added. However, the company wants to refine how the adult platforms functions with the physical basics before including more.
The site also plans on incorporating sex video games, recorded playback, and online dating into its network.
Image source: FriXion
The Power of Patents
FriXion is set to become a huge player in the world of haptic sex technology. And a large part of its success so far comes from its agreements with patent owners who hold wide-ranging rights in online sex.
“Where people have failed, where we haven’t, is making the deals,” Seth said.
Seth and his team have made these deals with intellectual property holders who’ve bogged down development for other adult companies.
For instance, sales for the popular sex simulator the RealTouch [NSFW] were discontinued earlier this year. This was in part due to increasing licensing costs that American company Adult Entertainment Broadcast Network could not afford.
Kiiroo [NSFW], the Dutch makers of haptic sex products similar to the RealTouch, is also unable to sell in the United States because of a patent held by the brand Vstroker [NSFW]. However, co-founder Toon Timmermans told Future of Sex he is optimistic the two companies will be able to work something out.
It may not be surprising then that Seth blames patents for clamping down on real progress in the field of teledildonics. According to him, they are the reason why many products out there really aren’t that good.
“People have been squatting on this intellectual property basically, and every time someone’s come up to make a deal they say, ‘Oh, that’s great.’And they ask for too much money,” he said.
“They just get turned away, and they get designed around so to speak. So that’s why you get these limitations, all these limitations and gimmicks.”
FriXion is hoping to push innovation forward and work with other developers because of its access to intellectual property. By teaming up with the company, people who create devices will be protected by FriXion licenses, making it possible to build upon existing technology.
“We have so many patents, licenses, and permissions we can build anything,” Seth said.
In the meantime, Seth predicts 2014 is going to be a big year for teledildonics. More activity is happening in the field than ever before, and he can’t wait to see what developers come up with now that FriXion is offering its resources.
“I’m excited for the space race — the race to just better experience this. As cool as what we have is, we are just trying to lead by example,” he said.
“We’re trying to show you that this is what’s possible, so now that you have the tools, let’s get creative. Let’s make some really novel experiences.”
Featured image source: FriXion