By continuing your visit to this site, you accept the use of cookies. These ensure the smooth running of our services. Learn more.

Mar 23, 2007

Korean Startup Xtive fights Online Addiction with Subliminal Sound

Via Korea Times


Xtive, a Korean venture start-up, has developed a subliminal sound sequence, which it claims can prevent obsessive use of online games, thus giving hope to game addicts, reports The Korea Times. 

From the Korea Times interview

``We incorporated messages into an acoustic sound wave telling gamers to stop playing. The messages are told 10,000 to 20,000 times per second,’’ Xtive President Yun Yun-hae said.

``Game users can’t recognize the sounds. But their subconscious is aware of them and the chances are high they will quit playing,’’ the 35-year-old Yun said. ``Tests tell us the sounds work.’’

Xtive, which was established in 2005, spent about a year to create the sound sequence geared toward addressing the concern that Korean teenagers spend too much time playing computer games.

The addiction to the network games has turned into a serious social problem and some gamers have even died after long sessions in front of the computer.

Experts point out roughly 10 to 20 percent of high school students can be categorized as Web junkies who need treatment. And many believe that is a conservative perspective.

``Experiences tell us kids or adolescents simply don’t stop playing games when faced with forceful measures. Such attempts can also cause many side effects,’’ Yun said.

``But our newly developed sound sequence tells them to stop playing on their own. We think this can make a real difference in the war against obsessive game play,’’ he said.

Yun said Xtive plans to commercialize the phonogram along with the government and game companies.

``Game companies can install a system, which delivers the inaudible sounds after it recognizes a young user has kept playing after a preset period of time,’’ Yun said.

Xtive applied for a domestic patent for the phonogram and is looking to take advantage of the technology in other sectors.

``We can easily change the messages. In this sense, the potential for this technology is exponential,’’ Yun said.