July temperatures getting you down? Sony’s new miniature air conditioner can cool you off inside your own shirt.
The Reon Pocket is a new invention from Sony’s “startup acceleration program,” and is crowdfunded by Sony through its First Flight program. It’s been called a wearable AC unit for “personal climate control,” and could make a big difference in extreme weather conditions.
The device fits into the back of a specially designed shirt. It’s connected to a smartphone app via Bluetooth, so you can adjust the temperature at the touch of a button. The battery takes two hours to charge, and lasts for 90 minutes; Sony has the battery life listed as 24 hours, but it turns out that’s just for the Bluetooth connection.
The Reon Pocket sits at the base of your neck, and can lower your body temperature by as much as 23 degrees, or raise it by 14 degrees. It works by using the “Peltier effect,” emitting or absorbing heat when an electrical current passes across the battery’s junction.
The device and shirt can be purchased together for around $130 ( ¥12,760). It’s targeted toward business people who have to wear suits in extreme heat. Right now it’s only being launched in Japan, but may expand to other countries if it’s successful. It’s expected to hit Tokyo in March 2020.
And it’s not just for heat — the pocket air conditioner can warm you up during the winter, too. It’s not a replacement for weather-appropriate attire, but according to its trial users, it can make a noticeable difference on the hottest or coldest days.
Watch how it works below.