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Pavlok Smartband Shocks You Into Better Behavior

Forget fitness trackers or personal trainers. What you really need to make you stick to your diet and workout is a good old-fashioned electric shock. An upcoming wearable device called the Pavlok delivers a small electric shock to help you stick to your goals for $200.

According to a video on the device's Indiegogo page, Pavlok is built to help you break bad habits and build good ones in 30 days by serving up punishments (shocks) and rewards. Sound a little extreme to you? Pavlok's founder Maneesh Sethi said in the video, "I know that electric shocks sound crazy, but sometimes, crazy works."

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Some uses for Pavlok suggested by the makers include shocking you when you text an ex or beeping loudly whenever you step inside a McDonald's outlet. It can also link with other devices such as an EEG brainwave-sensor or fitness tracker to send reminders to stay alert or work out more.

Pavlok consists of a small module that's slightly bigger than a quarter, which you can attach to a shirt or place in a wristband. This module needs to be touching your skin for electrical conduction. It can vibrate, beep and electrically shock you on command, depending on how you program it via a companion app.

The team has not disclosed just how much of a shock the device will deliver, but says under its FAQ section that "the voltage/amperage is not enough to hurt you." The shock is supposedly akin to a static shock you get when touching a metal doorknob after walking on a rug with your socks on. You are also going to be able to adjust the intensity of the shock from the companion app (for iOS and Android).

In case you were looking to bring a little Fifty Shades into your life, you can even give someone permission to control your Pavlok and shock you.

Pavlok's makers say they intend to integrate IFTTT (If This Then That), a popular conditional programming platform, into its API to encourage the development of more functions.

You can get the Pavlok at an "almost-as-early-bird" price of $129 via the team's Indiegogo project, which has raised $49,001 of its $50,000 goal with 30 days to go. The team expects to start shipping the product by April 2015.

Staff writer Cherlynn Low will stick to a boring, non-shocking fitness tracker, thank you very much. Follow her @cherlynnlow. Follow Tom's Guide at @tomsguide and on Facebook.