How Much is the Newest Advanced Artificial Hand? $11,000 USD (video)

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bebionic-hand-11000

Bebionic is available this month for $11000.

RSLSteeper, creator of the Bebionic artificial hand, has just announced that the hand will be offered at a price of $11,000 (€9000) around the world. Amputees control the prosthetic limb using my-oelectric sensors that read signals on the surface of the skin from residual muscle. To the outside observer it looks like you are moving the hand with your thoughts. This advanced system typically allows you to start using the new limb immediately and get comfortable with it in a few days. While Bebionic is not the only myo-electric hand on the market, it does seem to be the least expensive. That may lead to many amputees choosing to adopt it when it goes on sale later this month. Check out the video below of the launch of Bebionic during the ISPO World Congress in May. Watch amputees completely new to the device try it out around 2:40!

RSLSteeper faces fierce competition from TouchBionics, the maker of the i-Limb Hand, which has been on the market for a few years, and comes with removable digits. As I mentioned when I first reviewed the Bebionic hand in February, the i-Limb is a very similar device, and both have the same four major grips that users can switch between (key, precision, pointer, power). Touch Bionics may have stepped out ahead last month with the release of the i-Limb Pulse, a new hand that allows for pulsing grips and a few other upgrades. However, the Bebionic’s price tag is a powerful advantage, and is about 35% less than i-Limb (~$17k USD at time of writing). Maybe RSLSteeper read the end of my latest article on their device?


We have to remember that most hand amputees still use traditional hook systems that haven’t really changed much since the 40s and that retail for $500 or so. A big reason is that (except for veterans) most amputees can’t get enough money from their insurance agencies to cover expensive prosthetics. $11,000 still isn’t cheap, but it’s a big step in the right direction. Though it would be nice if the fancy synthetic skin covering (available in 19 shades of humanity) was included in that price instead of an additional $600. In any case, major kudos to RSLSteeper for getting a top of the line myo-electric hand closer to fitting in the budget of the average family.

My accolades, however, are notoriously fickle. I would gladly praise Touch Bionics or any other company that can get a myo-electric hand to the market for less than $10k. So keep up the competition, please! Eventually we may see prosthetic hands directly wired into the nervous system, but until we do myo-electrics are still the most advanced systems out there. Not as good as a natural hand, but they come pretty close. Check out the Bebionic in action in the promo video below (apologies for using it for a third time).

*UPDATE: The Bebionic hand will be offered through SPS in the United States, though a USA branch of RSLSteeper will be opening in San Antonion, Texas later this month.

[screen capture and video credit: Bebionic/Mark Hunter]
[source: RSL Steeper press release]

Discussion — 21 Responses

  • Daryl June 30, 2010 on 7:20 pm

    Does that price include the cost of the surgery or connection procedure?

    • d9a8c974e0899766680c286f4d7878 Daryl June 30, 2010 on 9:04 pm

      I think you strap it on?

  • Daryl June 30, 2010 on 3:20 pm

    Does that price include the cost of the surgery or connection procedure?

    • d9a8c974e0899766680c286f4d7878e9 Daryl June 30, 2010 on 5:04 pm

      I think you strap it on?

  • Cohlea wire July 1, 2010 on 7:04 am

    Yea, the procedure is not mentioned and this is a crucial thing. I don’t think it is cheap. $11,000+surgery=selling a bionic hand in order to survive

  • Cohlea wire July 1, 2010 on 3:04 am

    Yea, the procedure is not mentioned and this is a crucial thing. I don’t think it is cheap. $11,000+surgery=selling a bionic hand in order to survive

  • Rob July 1, 2010 on 2:41 pm

    Understand that this is the price of the hand but that does not include the services associated with making a prosthetic arm onto which the hand is installed. Put another way, if you bought this or any prosthetic hand (or foot for that matter), you would have a foot or hand that you could rest on a table but it would not be usable. The hand or foot needs to be installed onto a prosthesis which includes a socket, suspension, interfaces and yes a hand or foot. Lastly, a component manufacturer of feet or hands likely will not just sell a hand or foot to anyone.

  • Rob July 1, 2010 on 10:41 am

    Understand that this is the price of the hand but that does not include the services associated with making a prosthetic arm onto which the hand is installed. Put another way, if you bought this or any prosthetic hand (or foot for that matter), you would have a foot or hand that you could rest on a table but it would not be usable. The hand or foot needs to be installed onto a prosthesis which includes a socket, suspension, interfaces and yes a hand or foot. Lastly, a component manufacturer of feet or hands likely will not just sell a hand or foot to anyone.

  • wilfredo andres July 23, 2010 on 12:17 pm

    how can i afford for that too much price, i have no enough money to buy because i am already amputated

  • JustaGuy July 29, 2010 on 5:25 pm

    @Wilfredo Andres.
    Get an education, get a job, save up, invest. Everyone else does it, most do it rather well, such is the way of the very capitalist systems that necessitated the progress that led to this technology being invented.

  • JustaGuy July 29, 2010 on 1:25 pm

    @Wilfredo Andres.
    Get an education, get a job, save up, invest. Everyone else does it, most do it rather well, such is the way of the very capitalist systems that necessitated the progress that led to this technology being invented.

  • ObscureDragom July 30, 2010 on 3:02 am

    “Eventually we may see prosthetic hands directly wired into the nervous system,”

    Surgically attached to the nerves… Cheap out and use the EPOC Neuroheadset.

    http://www.emotiv.com/apps/epoc/299/

  • ObscureDragom July 29, 2010 on 11:02 pm

    “Eventually we may see prosthetic hands directly wired into the nervous system,”

    Surgically attached to the nerves… Cheap out and use the EPOC Neuroheadset.

    http://www.emotiv.com/apps/epoc/299/

  • Quetzalquatanox July 30, 2010 on 3:30 am

    11k is still not cheap, but when compared to the hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars bionic arms have cost in the past, this is an absolute dream. Bionic arms probably will eventually be available to the masses, though probably still with a bit of a hefty price tag.

  • Quetzalquatanox July 29, 2010 on 11:30 pm

    11k is still not cheap, but when compared to the hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars bionic arms have cost in the past, this is an absolute dream. Bionic arms probably will eventually be available to the masses, though probably still with a bit of a hefty price tag.

  • Memeforster October 7, 2010 on 5:26 pm

    this is amazing

  • Tero December 29, 2010 on 12:56 pm

    My life’s dream to have a bionic prosthesis for the left hand but only a dream because I have no money to buy it

  • Anonymous January 11, 2011 on 6:38 am

    Needs hand or foot must be installed on a prosthesis that includes a socket, suspension, interfaces, and yes a hand or foot. Finally, a manufacturer of components of the feet or hands, probably not only going to sell a hand or a foot.

    virility ex

  • jackreed January 13, 2011 on 9:02 am

    I have to say that you are dead-on with the analysis of prosthetic usage vs insurance. Prosthesis has been an interest of mine since a young child, and all advances greatly interest me, but I can’t help but feel that, for the forseeable future at least,most usage will be restricted by finances and research projects.This is where you can hire a spray gun and paint the entire roof with a high quality outdoor paint.This is contempt for the human mind.
    Another adjustment problem faced by the gifted is the result of their uncommon versatility.
    They are capable of doing so many things well that they have a tendency to spread
    themselves too thin.

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  • Salam_4eve March 1, 2011 on 3:43 pm

    thats now called Technology….But Quite Expensive…for me itz about 1000,000 PKR!!!

  • David Kwang October 5, 2014 on 9:21 am

    I am a Malaysian who is an amputee from the wrist downward due to an industrial accident 35year ago ,want to know more about your BeBonic hand and also how much is going to cost to have one . Thank you