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Games for your gums: New app aims to make brushing teeth fun

Japanese company Sunstar's $45 G.U.M Play connects to your smartphone and turns your toothbrush into a videogame controller.

Sunstar Inc.

We don't yet have a contraption that brushes our teeth for us (electric brushes definitely don't count), but a Japanese company just might have something that at least makes the whole process less of a chore.

Dubbed G.U.M Play, it's a small device that fits on any toothbrush. It syncs with an app, available on both Android and iOS devices, to turn your brush into a game controller or a news reader.

The first application, Mouth Monster, has you defending a candyland inside your mouth from invading bacteria. The invaders are dispatched by brushing at a steady beat in key zones around the gum line. You can see this demoed in the video below.

Meanwhile, Mouth Band is a simplified Guitar Hero-style game where you choose from a selection of tunes and play through each song by brushing in tempo with the music in different areas of your mouth. Finally, Mouth News is a customisable news aggregation feature in which 3-minute news reports are sent from your smartphone and played through your brush.

G.U.M Play is also fitted with sensors that monitor the speed at which you brush as well as the angle and zone of the mouth. Based on the information it mines, it'll give instructions on how to better clean your pearly whites and gums.

More and more household items are becoming smartened up thanks to smartphone connectivity and Internet of Things technology. New gadgets like this show that all products, even the humble toothbrush, can be smartened up in some way.

The G.U.M Play comes in standard white, with a range of five subtle coloured rubber covers sold separately. It goes on sale today, priced at ¥5,000 (around $45, £30, AU$60).