Oxama freediving computer speaks to its wearer through their face
Diving deep underwater while holding your breath can be risky, which is why many freedivers wear a dive computer on their wrist. The face-worn Oxama device is claimed to offer several advantages, including the fact that it speaks to its wearer.
Created by a Milan-based startup of the same name, Oxama takes the form of a soft silicone mask that is secured to the user's face via two elastic head straps. Goggles can be worn beneath it, or a dive mask can be worn over top of it. Contained within the device are two removable electronics modules, located over each of the wearer's cheeks.
One of those units incorporates sensors that track variables such as depth, water temperature, elapsed dive time, ascending/descending speed, and acceleration – these are all also tracked by most conventional wrist-worn freediving computers. That said, Oxama also measures its user's heart rate and blood oxygen level (via an optical sensor that sits against their skin) along with their head angle – the latter is useful for competitive freedivers who are swimming straight down.
All of this data is conveyed to the wearer via the other module, which incorporates a bone conduction transducer. This unit emits synthetic voice audio in the form of vibrations that travel through the cheek bones and into the inner ear, where they're heard as sound. As a result, the user doesn't have to continually hold up a wrist-worn computer to read its display.
Utilizing an accompanying iOS/Android app, the Oxama audio module can be set to one of four modes – Quiet, in which it records all the data but only speaks at the beginning and end of the dive; Alert, in which it only speaks to the user if certain predetermined thresholds are exceeded; Chatty, in which both alerts and other preselected parameters are spoken once every 15 seconds; and Mute, in which it records data but doesn't say anything at all.
And as is the case with other dive computers, all of the data is saved for inclusion in the user's dive log.
Should you be interested, Oxama is presently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign. Assuming it reaches production, a pledge of €499 (about US$580) will get you one – the planned retail price is €999 ($1,160). It can be seen in use, in the video below.