Why not? Japanese company Neurowear is crowdfunding a new version of the Necomimi, a pair of motorized cat ears that move based on your brain waves. While you probably won’t catch your boss wearing the Necomimi headset during a Zoom call (although that would be cool), they could become a popular item among livestreamers, cosplayers, and of course, weeaboos.
Neurowear released the original Necomimi headset back in 2012, and while it was definitely a niche product, it found fans in Japan, North America, and Europe. The new Necomimi 2 is basically a slimmer version of its predecessor, with a rechargeable battery and other small improvements. It still detects and responds to just four emotions (focused, relaxed, neutral, and “in the zone”), though a new built-in speaker makes meowing and purring noises.
Yeah, it’s weird. Neurowear goes to great lengths to describe the Necomimi as a product for people who want to better communicate their emotions in professional or casual settings … but it’s clearly just a cute accessory that’s cashing in on the catboy/catgirl trend (which is exactly what it sounds like, don’t bother Googling it). Other products, like the Razer Kraken Kitty, also appeal to the cat-impersonating demographic, though Razer’s headset a bit more functional than Necomimi.
According to Neurowear, “wearing catgirl cat ears will make everyone, young and old, cute. You can’t have a scary face with cat ears.” If you agree, you can pay 14,850 Japanese Yen (about $135 USD) to buy yourself a set of Necomimi.