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A new 'smart' sex toy is being launched with the promise not only of enhancing female pleasure, but allowing the world to learn more about it too.

Created by the company of the same name, Lioness is designed to provide a wealth of data on each user over time - such as body temperature, contractions and movement. This data can then be used by individual women to spot patterns in their arousal, while, if they choose, they can also share that data anonymously with the Lioness database and community to help women all over the world learn more about how the female body works.

This element of learning is an integral part not only of the vibrator, but of the company behind it. Originally launched as SmartBod, Lioness Inc spoke to the University of California's Berkeley News to explain how the business, and the toy itself, came out.

"I grew up in a more conservative family from the Midwest and we never talked about sex," explained CEO and co-founder Liz Klinger. "And because I wasn’t able to ask questions early on, it only made me more curious to learn more about what was out there."

Community manager Betsy Rohney went on to stress the importance of giving women a space to talk openly about sex. "We wanted to create a community that can talk about these things and feel safe. Where women can get reliable information that will help them explore themselves and really know what benefits them."

Launched via Indiegogo, a crowdfunding site, the Lioness has a number of practical features that aim to make it a better all-round experience for women. These include easy-to-use control buttons, a low battery indicator and a travel lock.

This combination of practicality and self-knowledge was the ethos behind the company's original name - SmartBod. The business rebranded to Lioness in December 2015, explaining that while its original title reflected what the company does well, the new name better reflects why it does what it does: "knowledge, empowerment, and destigmatising women's sexual health," according to its blog.