Human testing vs Artificial Intelligence

Last week Sated’s team read on social media of a new algorithm, developed to validate a female orgasm. The company behind it claimed that by using research data based on changes in heart rate, the software could help sex tech developers test their products.

So we ask do we really need this?

Let’s consider how a tea or coffee producer uses human tasters to help them refine a blend. That is because human reaction provides the “wow data” companies are looking for to make informed choices about how to bring the best possible products in to the market.

For Sex toy manufacturers, there are many elements to testing an adult toy – the orgasm is only one of these metrics.  The majority of manufacturers rely on experienced human testers who provide the best and most informed feedback on perhaps one of the hardest to describe human experiences.

Let’s be clear. We don’t doubt the science behind algorithms, or their place in a modern world consistently searching for answers through Artificial Intelligence (AI). However, there’s little assurance in our minds that digital data can make our team of sex toy testers redundant any time soon.

Do you have an idea for a new adult pleasure product? Would you like a little help to guide you through the journey of making it a desirable reality? Get in touch today – we may just be able to help you.

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Making your sex toy idea happen

Some of us at one time or another, may have had a new sex toy idea and we thought it could be the next big thing. There’s been a lot of talk in the industry recently that SexTech start ups are shifting away from the phallic shapes towards new and innovative products.

The journey between the initial idea and seeing it on the shelves can be a very rewarding experience. However the road to success is littered with hidden pitfalls. Many companies and inventors struggle, or even fail, to develop a new product without appropriate assistance.

First and foremost, our role at Sated Design is to assist businesses in developing a new or improving an existing product so it is ready for its intended market.

A typical project would include one or more of the following stages:

  1. Review – the idea may be good, but does it tick all the boxes to be a successful and commercially viable product? This is the first step along the road and allows you to decide whether it is worth continuing or not.
  2. Funding – Developing, protecting, manufacturing and distributing a product will require a substantial financial investment. How are the necessary funds going to be raised?
  3. Protecting – There is no point having a great product if a copycat competitor steals your market advantage. What type of intellectual property protection is most suitable?
  4. Developing the product – To take an idea from a rough sketch on the back of a paper napkin to a physical product rolling off the production line involves several stages. From the initial concept sketches, prototyping and testing, to producing data files ready for manufacturing, there are many elements to consider in development of a product.
  5. Selling the product – All the hard work getting the product developed and manufactured will be for nothing if distribution and marketing fails. How are you going to get a good return on your investment?

Even the most accomplished will require assistance with new sex toy ideas which is where Sated Design’s expertise is invaluable.  We work closely with all our clients to ensure they have all the support they need throughout the product development process.

Who we are
Sated Design was founded in 2003.  We are a focused company who want our clients to achieve business success with innovative products that address the key factors of performance, reliability, cost and aesthetics.

We have designed many products within the Adult industry and to date our products have won Best Male Product for ETO, Winner of XBIZ Best Male Pleasure Product, Winner of Erotixx Highest Potential Product as well as several nominations for other Erotica Awards.

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The Importance of Continuous Testing

Testing a product concept during all stages of its development is an important part of the design process. Prototypes, mock-ups and test rigs, or whatever you wish to call them, enable the design team to evaluate every aspect of a product. Using feedback derived from tests the design team create great products which delight the user and make healthy profits for the manufacturing and distributing chain.

Here at Sated Design our approach to the development of adult toys makes use of many different types of prototypes and each prototype brings its own benefits to the end design. At the end of the development process the design team and the client can be confident that the final product is indeed fit for purpose. Prototypes are generally made in house in our model shop although we will use external suppliers for specialist parts.

Good visual imagery is an important part of any design process as it is an effective way of showing what the final outcome will potentially look like. 2D images have their place; they are great for visualisation but are unable to portray some of the important details; for example the weight and feel of the product. Accurate prototypes that are faithful to the intended appearance and feel of the final design are extremely useful in marketing discussions and for pre-launch media. We have lost count of the number of occasions when a prototype has been photographed before a production piece has been available. That is not poor time planning, it is in fact the opposite and a necessity when rapid design techniques have to bring together marketing/promotion during the run up to a launch or exhibition.

Good user experience is a vital part of any adult toy. The whole experience of receiving the item, opening the packaging and switching the toy on are very important but they are the aperitif for the main course. If the toy does not ‘work’ then it is just a big let-down and that has to be avoided at all costs. Working prototypes are a vital part of getting this right in the product development. An example of how this process can work came about very recently when our model makers made a silicone prototype of a new vibrator. This was sent out for user testing and the feedback suggested that the sensations could be improved by thickening a certain part of the shaft profile. A second prototype was quickly prepared and once again sent out to the same person for testing. Within days we received positive feedback. This simple, quick and low costs exercise gave the client the confidence to immediately go forward to the next stage of development and the tester kept the prototype!

Some prototypes are quite mundane but they still serve a vital role in improving the assembly and cost effective manufacture of a product. It is not uncommon for our design team to prepare several 3D printed prototypes to evaluate wiring, motor mounting, jigging/fixtures and resolving fine details of switches and connectors to ensure that no detail is ignored.

Do you have an idea for a new Sex Toy? Would you like a little help to guide you through the journey of making your product a desirable reality? Get in touch today – we may just be able to help you.

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The Power of Prototyping

Why use prototypes in your new Adult Toy development?

Providing a link between a world of virtual design and real life, a prototype is a vital way of testing designs. 2D images do have a place in the designing process but there is no substitute for holding something real in your hand, no more so than when developing an adult toy. Our prototypes offer extremely high levels of accuracy and intricacy resulting from the application of modern prototyping techniques such as high resolution 3D printing, computer controlled machining and casting of medical grade elastomers. Our prototyping techniques can provide stunning results.

For a Sex Toy developer, a prototype is a preliminary version of the intended product and can be used not only for user testing but also to sign-off on important factors such as the form and feel of the product, or to inform the designer of necessary adjustments to mechanisms or tolerances of parts for performance and assembly. The prototype can also help the project stake-holders to make the best decisions for the project and optimise the development journey leading up to manufacture and launch. It is therefore vital to clearly define the purpose for the prototype as this is key to how a prototype should be prepared and can save unwarranted work.

Naturally, the final product will be a part of an intimate human interaction, but the sooner that user/product experience is evaluated, then the better that interaction can be. It is impossible to overstate how important prototyping is to ensuring an effective product design and development process, delivering the optimum results and ultimately a great end-user experience.

Here at Sated Design we have in-house prototyping capabilities alongside a large catalogue of external suppliers for all manner of prototyping services, enabling our expert model-makers to produce competitively priced, high-quality prototypes for the Adult-Toy Industry within tight deadlines.

Do you have an idea for an adult toy?

If you do, or if you want to compliment one of your current designs, or are even just looking for a fresh perspective on a current product, please contact the team here at Sated Design.

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Pulling the Plug

A patent protecting the broad concept of “teledildonics” has recently expired, potentially paving the way for a wave of sex toys that can be controlled over the internet.

Teledildonics, also known as cyberdildonics, is a term to describe sex toys that can be plugged into a device, such as a computer, tablet or smartphone, and link to other sex toys and interactive applications over the internet, giving users the possibility to interact with sexual partners over long distances.

The patent, originally filed in 1998, includes descriptions of systems where stimulation devices are linked via transmitters to computers equipped with video cameras, capable of then connecting to and interacting with other such systems and pre-recorded video across the internet.

Many view this particular patent as having stifled development of this technology for several years, with the company that had owned the rights filing 10 lawsuits alleging infringement between 2015 and 2017, leading them to be labelled a “patent troll” and gaining notoriety in the industry. The expiration of the patent now potentially removes a large barrier to new development in this area.

However, despite cheers and applause from sex toy innovators, expiration of this single patent doesn’t necessarily mean a green light to a free-for-all for new teledildonics products. While on the surface it may look like a golden opportunity, other inventors will no doubt hold patents and intellectual property covering different areas of this technology, so even with one significant obstacle removed the wider legal minefield remains present. You are just a bit less likely to get sued.

As always, it’s important to continue to do your due diligence to ensure that your product doesn’t infringe anyone else’s intellectual property and land you and your business in hot water. Make use of the services of a patent attorney to help you discover the potential pitfalls and barriers to your product development early on in the process to avoid costly legal action and redesigns later on. It is important that you have a good understanding of the intellectual property landscape of your industry.

We as your product designers can then help you to come up with solutions that circumvent the rights held by your competitors and put valuable IP into your own hands.

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Are There Advantages of Outsourcing Your Design Requirements?

Here we look at why it may be the better option rather than building your own in-house team of designers.

Experience:
Consultancies deal with a wide range of products across a variety of markets, giving them a greater breadth and depth of skill and knowledge. This knowledge helps to fast track ideas to becoming a reality, whereas working within your own confines can potentially take much longer, especially if it is proving difficult to know where to begin.

Working with many projects and different clients, here at Sated Design we can cross pollinate insights and knowledge gained from a host of different varying projects. Our depth of experience coupled with your knowledge results in original thoughts which develop into original products that standout not just in terms of aesthetics but also in functionality.

Cost:
Hiring external design services at first glance may seem expensive, but in the long run will prove to be cost effective. By paying for design services only when you need them, this not only saves on the cost of salaries but also all of the other extra expenses such as software-licences, workstations, prototypes and testing equipment.

Design consultancies not only help to save time and money by designing your product but also help you save when it comes to manufacturing. By using your design-house’s suppliers, you will be able to receive competitive quotations and manufacturing experience, which is not easy to find on your own.

Flexibility:
Designing might not be your full time job, it may be your hobby therefore you may not have sufficient time to focus on achieving your goals for your project. Seeking external design expertise will help you prioritise the workload or assist you at critical phases of the design process. It is always a good idea to seek help or even advice during the development of your product. Any delays in launching products or missing a design opportunity can end up costing you far more than the cost of hiring external help.

Conclusion:
By helping you to refine your ideas to a good product for your intended market and ensuring that the end result can be manufactured we may just save you time, money and a catalogue of unexpected challenges.

If you need something designing, or to compliment your current design capabilities, or even just a fresh perspective on a project, please contact us here at Sated Design.

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Different Shapes and Sizes

Silhouette Sex

In the world of adult products you would be very much mistaken for assuming that there is a limit to the range of toys available on the market. There is in fact a large variety of products out there to satisfy anyone’s desires; from rabbits to sleeves, from sensual to orgasmic, and importantly for all tastes and both sexes.

There are over seven billion people on our planet and no two people are exactly alike. On the outside (and inside) we may be similar, but in essence we are all unique and that uniqueness is often expressed as our likes and dislikes.

Sometimes we may share similar interests and dislikes with our contemporaries but in reality we all like different things that suit us personally. Because we are all inherently different, no single product will ever be perfect for everyone. Colour, shape, cultural influences, personal health and abilities, preferences in holding, stroking and the ubiquitous multitude of erogenous zones all add to the considerations an adult product designer must understand and work with. It is fair to say that there is no single toy design that will suit every user and that is why there is so much potential and fun in exploring and creating even more adult toys.

One of the more recent trends in adult toy design is that people are making more and more personal decisions about what sort of toy they want to buy and use, they are more confident in expressing themselves sexually with less fear of being judged. With people’s confidence increasing, there is a greater demand for a much larger variety of products, whether they are a slight alteration to a long existing design or something never seen, or thought of before.

With more than 15 years of experience of designing some truly unique products, here at Sated Design we continue to design and develop products to excite and satisfy today’s users.

If you have an idea for a new adult product, whether it is straightforward or complex, we at Sated Design can help bring your idea to life. We can take your concept through 2D visualisation right through to a fully working product ready to satisfy your customer’s needs.

Get in touch to discuss your ideas today.  We can help guide you through the journey of making your desirable product a reality.

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