Home Entertainment Audio SoundShirt Brings Music to Life for Deaf People

SoundShirt Brings Music to Life for Deaf People

Imagine life without music. I know, I couldn’t either. But for some people, this is their reality. But then, along came the SoundShirt. This haptic wearable fashion tech garment gives the deaf and generally anybody the opportunity to feel the music through the shirt. It brings music to life by being physically felt.

The SoundShirt was designed by CuteCircuit in London. It is made without any wires on a soft stretch fabric as it is built with advanced smart fabrics. It has a cool unisex design and could easily stretch and fit into any body size. It has a lifetime warranty in case something needs to be repaired. And if you don’t need or want it anymore, the garment can be returned for recycling. But who wouldn’t want to keep this shirt, right?

cutecircuit soundshirt music fashion tech sound clothing shirt model shot

How it works

The SoundShirt has 30 haptic micro-actuators which receives the sound wirelessly in real-time. It comes with a rechargeable brain controller, Bluetooth 5, and a Wireless Orchestra protocol. It could be controlled by an app called Q App, which is available in the App Store.

During concerts or any live performance, there are microphones placed close to the instruments. The sound is transmitted through a digital music capture system and is converted into data that is analyzed by the Q software. This data is then transformed into touch sensations to the SoundShirt.

Related story: Feel the Sound with the New SenseForce Gaming Chair

The Q App is able to do the same for pre-recorded music or even when watching a movie. The SoundShirt can also be connected to any video game console so the players could feel every move, thump, or feeling during the game.

cutecircuit soundshirt music fashion tech sound clothing shirt diagram drawing how does it work

Recognitions and awards

The SoundShirt has been recognized several times already for its unique design and innovative features. They have been part of exhibits, have been nominated for the STARTS Prize, and had three honorable mentions in the Fast Company Innovation by Design Awards in the Experimental, Fashion, and Beauty and Social Good categories. Last year, they got the UNESCO Netexplo Award for Technology that Improves Life. And just last month, they bagged the AUGGIE Award for Best Societal Impact.


YouTube: The Sound Shirt | Junge Symphoniker Hamburg

Photo credit: All images shown are owned by CuteCircuit and were permitted to be used for editorial usage.

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Sam Albano
Sam Albano
Tech Journalist