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30 Jan, 2024 | Tuesday
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Elon Musk's Neuralink will soon let you control your phone, laptop using your thoughts

Elon Musk has confirmed that first Neuralink transplant has been successful, and it will soon let users control their phones using their thoughts.

Edited By: Shweta Ganjoo

Published: Jan 30, 2024, 06:26 PM IST

Elon-Musk
Elon-Musk

Story Highlights

  • Elon Musk's Neuralink has conducted its first brain transplant.
  • Elon Musk says that the transplant has been successful.
  • Neuralink will let users control their phones with their thoughts.

Elon Musk’s neurotechnology company called Neuralink has successfully completed its first human implant. Musk, via a series of posts on X (formerly Twitter), said that the first human who received an implant from Neuralink is recovering well and that initial tests show promising neuron spike detection.

Musk also said Neuralink’s first product is called Telepathy and that it would enable users to control a smartphone, a laptop or any other electronic device simply by thinking about it. “Enables control of your phone or computer, and through them almost any device, just by thinking,” he wrote in his post.

In the same post, Musk, who also owns X, Tesla and The Boring Company, said that the initial recipents of the brain implant, or Telepathy, would be people who have lost the use of their limbs. “Imagine if Stephen Hawking could communicate faster than a speed typist or auctioneer. That is the goal,” he added in his post.

It is worth noting that Neuralink received its FDA approval for conducting its first-in-human clinical trial in May 2023. It received $280 million of Series D funding by Peter Thiel’s Founder Fund in August 2023, following which it started recruiting people for its clinical trial.

While the initial aim of company is to use the brain implant for treating people with critical brain diseases and curing a host of conditions such as obesity, autism, depression and schizophrenia, the long-term aim is to use this technology for cognitive enhancement. At the moment, the company is deploying people for its clinical trial or what the company describes as ‘PRIME study’ that aims to help people with quadriplegia, cervical spinal cord injury or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) to control external devices with their thoughts.

“This study involves placing a small, cosmetically invisible implant in a part of the brain that plans movements. The device is designed to interpret a person’s neural activity, so they can operate a computer or smartphone by simply intending to move – no wires or physical movement are required,” Neuralink’s website says.

Interestingly, Neuralink has not only developed a brain implant, but it has also developed a sewing machine-like device that is capable of implanting ultra-thin threads inside the brain. These threads connect to a custom-designed chip with electrodes that can read data from groups of neurons.

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Author Name | Shweta Ganjoo

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