High Tech Sex

FLURT Magazine
Carolyn Stransky

There’s no denying that technology has become an integral part of the modern relationship. At the touch of your fingertips, you’re able to have face-to-face conversations across countries, find a new playmate entirely and now, even have sex.

From app-controlled vibrators to mutually responsive sex sleeves, new technology called teledildonics is changing the way we have sex from a distance. And with long-distance relationships becoming increasingly common, this is a surefire way for couples looking for more intimacy and physical stimulation than what’s currently possible through traditional chat channels.

Here are some of the leading products defying distance and allowing couples to have realistic, high-tech sexual interactions while apart — all you need is Bluetooth and an internet connection.

Two-Way Connection

For a truly interactive cybersex experience, Lovense provides long-distance sex toys that mimic each other’s motions for their partners to simulate IRL sex.

“Most LDR couples are already sexting and having Skype sex on a regular basis, but it can be awkward for some or leave them craving each other more. Our products are a natural next step for these couples,” says Lovense’s Chief Marketing Officer Eddy Olivares.

The box for Lovense's Nora masturbator, which comes with long-distance interactivity.

The secret behind Lovense’s technology is an innovative bi-directional control feature. Each Lovense toy is equipped with a sensor that detects the user’s movements and then sends commands to their partner’s toy. Couples have three options for how it interacts, ranging from one-way action or syncing the toys so they react together. Any two toys can be connected, accommodating both homosexual and heterosexual relationships.

“It’s very clear that the technology, not just for long-distance sex but for long-distance control, resonates with consumers,” Eddy explains. He later mentioned that, “nothing replaces human touch, but when you’re hundreds or thousands of miles away from your partner, this is a great temporary solution.”

Amplified Video Chatting

Video chat platforms like Skype and Oovoo have been a godsend for long-distance couples seeking a more personal connection with their partners. Unfortunately, though, that’s not always enough.

“With video chatting, only two senses are used: The elements of seeing and hearing. There was no technology that could add the element of touch in any normal circumstance… naturally, this is how Kiiroo decided to take video chatting to the next level, by adding the element of touch for an even more realistic and holistic intimate experience, no matter the distance,” says Toon Timmermans, CEO of Kiiroo.

Kiiroo’s devices go beyond typical sexual intimacy products by combining a video chat platform with captive touch technology. The Onyx, their male masturbator that they developed with Fleshlight as well as the Pearl, their female masturbator, can be paired in any combination. There is also a one-to-many feature, which means, for instance, that a webcam model using the Pearl device could connect to several other devices at once.

Kiiroo’s Onyx (left) and Pearl (right) masturbators.

“Touching yourself is not the same as being touched by someone else, so Kiiroo has helped make the long-distance experience more realistic,” Toon says. “Now, you don’t need to physically do the work yourself — we provide the tool and the platform.”

Female-Focused Pleasure

Wearable and totally silent, Vibease is a thrill for long-distance lovers because you can use it any time — not just during a steamy Skype session. The unit is designed to focus on women’s sexual pleasure, fitting comfortably in a woman’s undergarments. Her partner can then deliver custom vibrations from anywhere in the world.

Vibease is wearable, hands-free and designed to remain steady.

“I created Vibease as a fun project between me and my wife when we were in a long-distance relationship. After we learned there were many people looking for a long-distance intimacy solution, I decided to make Vibease a company,” says Dema Tio, Vibease founder and CEO. “We’ve received a lot of emails about people wishing they knew about our product before, saying they wouldn’t have broken up with their boyfriend or girlfriend if they had.”

Preview of Vibease’s video call and audiobook features.

Another unique aspect of Vibease is that, through their app, you are also able to connect with a library of erotica and porn. While listening, the unit pulses along with the storyline to bring your fantasies to life.

“We noticed that more and more women were listening to erotica, and with the rise of erotic literature like 50 Shades of Grey, I started to think that there’s something special about this,” Dema says. “Now, after five years, we’ve decided to focus on this area.”

What's Coming Next?

When you research the future of long-distance sex, one topic appears again and again in chat rooms, Reddit feeds and articles from industry experts alike: Virtual reality.

“Virtual reality is so immersive and realistic that it was only natural that the element of touch was missing,” says Toon from Kiiroo. The company has been doing a lot of work in the virtual reality industry, including VR porn headsets. “The goal is to eventually make the user experience as real as possible. Currently, we have livestream VR where you can watch your girlfriend in her room in real-time and it feels like you are right there with her. We have some more exciting things to do with VR coming up and we are working on making this experience as fluid as possible.”

Eddy from Lovense, however, disagrees. While Lovense has received requests for virtual reality porn accessories, they haven’t witnessed the same demand when it comes to marrying virtual or augmented reality and the long-distance sexual experience.

“Long-distance sex toys are in the beginning stages of awareness and acceptance,” says Eddy. “As much as I’d like to say the future of long-distance sex is VR or AR, it’s just not what we’re seeing.”

When there are so many sex toys and accessories on the market or being beta tested that we could have never imagined existing before, it’s difficult to predict what will come next. All we know is that whether the future holds kiss transferring machines or cafes staffed entirely by sex robots, we’re already dripping with excitement.

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Huge thanks to Marguerite Roth for the design