Innovators have used high-tech prosthetics to bring us one step closer to becoming Doctor Octopus, so why not do something similar with fellow Spider-Man villain The Scorpion?
That’s more or less the idea with The Tail Company‘s Digitail, a Kickstarter-backed animatronic prosthetic tail that can be controlled by a smartphone app.
Building on its previous tail concept from 2014, the Digitail aims to offer users a variety of customization options by connecting to a smartphone via Bluetooth.
To start, you can order tails of varying sizes and widths that are either “naked” and fully personalizable or themed after a particular character, like Nightcrawler from the X-Men or the Xenomorph of Alien fame.
You’ll then be able to download an Android or iOS companion app to connect to the tail. From there, The Tail Company says your phone will be given access to a suite of controls, including:
- A remote control
- Movelist editor (for example, setting a ‘happy’ or ‘sad’ mode for the tail)
- Gesture mode to freely move the tail around by flicking on the screen
- Notifications (for example, getting a text or Facebook message on your phone will prompt the tail to move)
- Send a ‘wag’ to someone else using the tail
Should the Kickstarter exceed its funding goal, The Tail Company has promised to add other features like GPS and Wi-Fi detection (with the tail wagging to let you know you have a strong connection) and alarms (to get the tail to move at a certain time).
Pledges to get the tail on Kickstarter start at a steep £144 (approximately $245 CAD), with shipping to Canada costing a whopping £49 (about $83). A dedicated remote for the tail (separate from the smartphone app) can also be purchased for an additional £30 (roughly $50.63 CAD).
As of the time of this writing, the Digitail has raised £5,811 (approximately $9,898 CAD) of its £7,000 (roughly $11,923 CAD) goal. The funding period is set to wrap on October 20th.
Let’s get this out of the way. This is a hilariously goofy and expensive product that few — if any — will wear while walking down the street or go to school or work wearing this. I know I definitely wouldn’t.
But in a day and age where pop-culture conventions, dress-up parties and the like are increasingly more prevalent, I can certainly see how the Digitail could appeal to a fairly large amount of people. Cosplayers, in particular, will surely get a lot of mileage out of the device.
The very steep price is the only significant issue. I’m not into cosplay, so I absolutely wouldn’t pay it, myself. That said, I totally appreciate the artistry that can go into the hobby.
For that reason, I imagine that the people who dress up often and don’t skimp out when putting their outfits together probably won’t mind paying a pretty penny for something like the Digitail.
Personally, I’m just curious to see the YouTube videos featuring Xenomorph-dressed people creatively using the tail to frighten their friends and family.
Note: This post is part of an ongoing series titled Sticky or Not in which staff reporter Bradly Shankar analyzes new and often bizarre gadgets, rating them sticky (good) or not (bad).
Image credit: The Tail Company, Twentieth Century Fox