Leave it to Elon Musk to push the boundaries of technology.
In a recent live-streamed video interview with the Wall Street Journal’s CEO Council Summit, billionaire Elon Musk shared what’s to come for Neuralink.
The brain-interface technology company co-founded by Elon Musk in 2016 aims to begin implanting microchips in humans as early as this year. The implant has already been tested on a monkey who was featured playing MindPong.
“We have Neuralink working well in monkeys. We are also doing a lot of testing and confirming that it’s very safe and reliable and that the Neuralink device can be removed safely. People may have seen the demo that we published earlier this year with the video of the monkey playing the video game Pong telepathically using the Neuralink in its brain,” Elon Musk said, according to the Wall Street Journal. “It’s completely wireless, charges inductively, so the monkey looks completely normal and yet is playing a video game telepathically.”
But, exactly why is this happening?
Elon Musk refers to Neuralink’s implant as “profound” as it could possibly provide a solution to help individuals with spinal cord injuries revive their health by obtaining full-body functionality.
“We hope to have this in our first humans — which will be people that have severe spinal-cord injuries like tetraplegics, quadriplegics — next year, pending FDA approval,” Elon Musk said.
He continued: “I think we have a chance of being able to allow someone who cannot walk or use their arms to be able to walk again.”
When is it coming to market?
The implant is currently awaiting approval from the FDA, but Elon Musk is pretty confident the technology will surpass the guidelines required.
According to Business Insider, Elon Musk had originally promised to begin testing the implants on humans by the end of 2021. However, Musk has a history of providing overly optimistic timelines. Only time will tell if this new technology will be available for humans soon.
Will time also tell if this will be good for society?