The Ring Is Real

It’s been almost a year since Takuro Yoshida and his team blew up Kickstarter with the Ring, a wearable that uses simple wand-like gestures to control gadgets in the home.

Promises abounded: You’ll be able to control the lights in your home with the flick of a finger. You’ll be able to change the song on your iPhone, turn up the music, or even snap a photo.

And then, as is the case with many hardware projects, Logbar (the company behind Ring) ran into a few obstacles. Manufacturing was delayed, as the team worked to make the device smaller and more (truly) wearable, and other delays put the product months behind schedule. In fact, early backers only received their units in December of this year.

But all that said, the Ring is still an attractive wearable, in my opinion. We caught up with Yoshida at CES Unveiled and saw the device first-hand. It’s not perfect, and still feels a bit big (though much smaller than the first iteration). However, the Logbar team at least has a firm understanding of the way that design needs to marry functionality.

The wearables of today are ugly. It’s true. The Apple Watch may put a dent in that argument, and the MICA by Intel is certainly trying to go against that ugly grain, but Ring by Logbar marks one of the first publicly available devices that actually looks good.

And beyond that, it seems to work. Yoshida explained that Ring takes a learning curve, much like typing on a keyboard. But once you learn how to use it, it seems to work well. Yoshida, in his demonstration at Unveiled, showed 100 percent gesture accuracy.

The Ring is available now for $269 and the newly unveiled Ring Hub, which lets you connect your home appliances (like the lights) via Wifi, is soon to be available for ~$70 in March of this year.

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