Vive – An Alcohol Monitoring Wristband that Connects to Social Networks
Many college students and young adults drink, and binge drinking is most common among this age group. Often, young adults will get accidentally drunk, not being in tune with their own limits or how what they have eaten or what they have done that day (i.e. a rigorous workout) may impact their tolerance.
This is particularly worrisome for college-aged females who are at risk of sexual assault. Recent news stories about sexual assault can attest to the fact that assault on college campuses is not on the decline. These two important topics – knowing one’s alcohol tolerance and sexual assault is why Vive, a wearable wristband that can let you know how drunk you while keeping you connected with the group you went out partying with, was created.
The wristband monitors a person’s biometrics related to alcohol consumption – namely their level of dehydration and overall consumption. The bracelet lets out a vibration after which the person wearing it is supposed to squeeze or “check in” it to let it know they are ok. If the wearer does not squeeze it in a timely manner, it will alert that person’s friends that they went out with because it is social media compatible. At the beginning of a night friends link their Vives together so they can alert the group if someone doesn’t check in or their intoxication level gets too high. Another feature – perhaps the most important one – is the wristband’s ability to sense immobility if the wearer passes out somewhere. The band can harnesses Bluetooth, GPS and Wi-Fi to triangulate the wearer in distress if necessary.
This technology can help mitigate both over-consumption and sexual assault by prompting friends to intervene early if a friend is too drunk – according to the makers of Vive “we’re intervening here earlier in this timeline, crucially, before an individual has been removed from the safety of their social network.” This is especially important since, according to well known data, alcohol is involved in at least half of sexual assaults.
The goal of the company who launched Vive is to have it become the norm accessory for venues that involve alcohol like fraternity and sorority parties, clubs and festivals. If it does become the norm, it may also have the added benefit of helping problem drinkers recognize they have a problem early on (and seek alcohol abuse help) while helping friends drink responsibly and stay safe while mitigating the risk of sexual assault.