Accessories

ORII smart ring: Now even better

Jewelry that does more

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Last year at Computex, I stumbled upon a cool smart ring and wrote about it. It was also my first year covering Computex and I had honestly never heard of bone actuator tech, hence the discovery of said smart ring that allowed me to make calls with my finger blew my mind.

This was the ORII ring, and a year later, I find them again at Computex and they have even more to offer.

When I first interviewed Emile and Kevin, founders of ORII’s Origami Labs, I only saw prototypes and one functioning ring for audio demos. These days, the rings are fully functional and are shipping to initial Kickstarter backers. More functionalities are added on, with even more features to come in the future.

What’s new with ORII?

For starters, the ORII ring is even smaller and more polished. It’s now at a size that I would actually wear for the tech.

And, as promised, it comes in more colors: There’s a red one that goes well with my hair, in addition to black, silver, and gray ones. This is a big deal to me because last year, there were only black and gray rings, and now color is finally here!

The ring comes with different ring sizes, too, so it fits every finger. It’s also splash-proof with an IPX7 rating so everyday wear is a possibility.

It comes with a charging dock, but it seems that the ring won’t be on it a whole lot as it has a whopping two days of battery standby time and two whole hours of talk time. That’s a lot considering you’ll only ever be using it for short commands and calls don’t usually last that long (we hope!).

So, how does it work?

With the ORII ring, you need only your finger to be able to hear things from your phone. The ring has a built-in mic so you can actually make calls — like a real spy.

Smart assistants are also compatible with the ORII. Using just the ring, you can send messages and issue smart commands to Google Assistant, Siri, or Alexa, without even having to look at your phone.

It has gesture commands and there’s also a button on the side of the ring that you can program depending on what you want it to do. For example, just raising your finger to your ear can activate the mic, or pressing the button can trigger your smart assistant.

At the bottom of the ring is a small LED light that’s a discreet way to give you notifications. Designed so only you can see the quick prompt, the lights are also fully customizable.


Meaning, you can change the colors depending on what app is alerting…

… or even choose which people messaging get special alerts.

Think of all the things you can do with this thing! Everything will literally be at the tip of your fingers.

Admittedly, I got sentimental when I tested out the ORII again. I personally saw the growth of this tech firsthand and it’s great to actually try out technology that only a year ago, Emile and Kevin were just describing to me. They’ve come a long way from last year and yet again I am impressed with their progress.

What I love about the ORII is how different it is to what we already have in the market. It’s great to see tech that breaks out from the usual mold of what current wearables are and what they do.

I’d totally rock this ring, and it’s not just because it matches my hair.

Accessories

Cheap Unlimited Airline Wi-Fi: #TravelHacks (Episode 1)

Plus our favorite travel gadget!

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In the very first episode of #TravelHacks we fly to Singapore on Singapore Airlines’ new 787-10 regional business class. I show you how to pick the right kind of luggage, give you tips on how to live out of a suitcase, get unlimited Wi-Fi on flights, taste the world’s cheapest Michelin Star meal, and of course talk about my perfect travel gadget.

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Accessories

PhoneSoap Go: A portable device that will sanitize your smartphone

It isn’t called PhoneSoap for nothing!

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That smartphone in your purse can do so much but it also has 18 times more bacteria than the average public toilet. Before we continue, let that sink in.

Before you drop that phone you’re probably reading this article on, know that there’s a way to clean your handset and it doesn’t involve soap and water. Introducing: PhoneSoap.

PhoneSoap Go is the brand’s latest release. It’s a tiny chest that will literally clean your smartphone. It uses UV-C light to kill bacteria on your device. All you do is put your smartphone inside, tap the lightning button, wait 10 minutes for one cleaning cycle, and your phone should be germ-free.

The inside compartment can house your phone, no matter what size. It’s pretty spacious so it can even fit small everyday stuff like keys or wallets. Despite all that space, the PhoneSoap Go is designed for portability. This is PhoneSoap’s smallest device — something you can bring along on trips to make sure your handset is sanitized anywhere you go.

On the back of the chest is a USB-A and a USB-C port. This is because the PhoneSoap Go has a 7000mAh battery built into it. That’s enough for 45 cleaning cycles, or four phone charging cycles.

Yes, I said phone charging cycles. That’s because you can actually use it as a power bank. There’s even a slot for your charging cable so you can charge as you sanitize your phone. That means even if the whole cleaning cycle is just 10 minutes, you can leave your phone plugged in longer. There’s even “acoustic outlets” at the bottom so you can hear phone notifications.

Of course, unless I have a petri dish and some phone swabs, I won’t be able to say definitively that this thing can clean 99.99 percent of bacteria on your phone, as the brand claims. But, I will say that if it does end up sanitizing your phone in any capacity, that’s already a good enough deal considering how dirty these things supposedly are, and how much we’re holding on to them on a daily basis.

But really, more than phone cleaning, what you get is peace of mind. Honestly, my own (many, rotating) devices have been chilling a lot in my PhoneSoap ever since I got it.

The PhoneSoap Go retails for US$ 79.95 and you can get it from their website.

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Accessories

This titanium strap elevates the way your Apple Watch looks

And doesn’t deplete your savings

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Although Nomad is best known for its beautifully crafted Horween Leather accessories, that doesn’t stop the company from trying other things like the Tesla Model 3 wireless charger from six months ago. This time around, the company dabbles in something familiar but still different — its first metal Apple Watch bands.

The new straps come in silver and space gray, and fits the 42mm/44mm models. There’s no word yet on rose gold and gold bands, as well as straps compatible with the smaller 38mm/40mm models.

The company promises the metal bands to be as light as possible, while maintaining that premium feel and durability thanks to the use of high-grade titanium.

The straps come with Nomad’s custom lugs and over twenty titanium links — ten of them removable — that you can customize according to your wrist size, as Nomad is including the link removal tool in the package.

Nomad’s new titanium Apple Watch bands are available now for US$ 179.95 on the Nomad website; that’s half the price of Apple’s own metal link band.

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