Japanese company Shiftall is bringing a strange but intriguing new device to consumers in the form of the Mutalk. Designed as a Bluetooth microphone, the Mutalk’s function is twofold: to obscure your speech to those around you, while also clarifying your speech to those you are speaking to on the phone or through voice chat. The device connects to your phone or computer via Bluetooth, and charges via a USB-C port.
The Mutalk works by creating a pocket of pressurized air in the inner chamber which prevents sound from escaping. This has the added benefit of eliminating background noise from your call, allowing those on the other end to hear your voice more clearly. Shiftall claims that wearing the Mutalk will muffle speech by -20 db.
The Mutalk will ship with a strap that will allow the user to speak hands free, but if you want to just pick it up and use it in small instances, the device will self-mute when not in use. Its unclear whether this technology will catch on given the jarring appearance of having a piece of tech strapped to your mouth in public, but it could be a handy way to solve several problems at once.
Shiftall says that the Mutalk will begin shipping in November or December and will cost around $139.