Companies are always trying to think of new, alternative ways for us to take calls from our smartphones. While for most, simply extending your arm with your smartphone in hand is plenty convenient enough, there are times when a hands-free situation can be, well, handy. Those ridiculous looking Bluetooth earpieces come to mind, as well the built-in microphones on just about every speaker on the market these days.
But for some, that’s just not good enough. We have already seen developers looking to alternate technologies to beam calls to our ears which includes Atari’s upcoming hat phones. And it looks as though the folks at Origami Labs have taken to Kickstarter to give bone induction another shot, essentially allowing us to take calls directly from our finger tips.
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The new ORII smart ring will use built-in technology to allow users to take calls through the tip of their finger. When you feel the ORII, which is tethered to your smartphone, start to vibrate, simply raise your finger and place it just in front of your ear to take the call. It’s like one of those futuristic movies with hand phones that seemed cool at the time but might actually be ridiculous in real life.
Having said that, the technology is pretty amazing here and anything to rid those awful Bluetooth earpieces from existence is good by me. The basic aluminum ring houses a Low Energy-enabled dual Bluetooth 4.0 radio with dual microphone noise cancellation, a customizable notification LED, a small battery and a gyroscope. The 50mAh battery supports up to 1.5 hours of talk time and 40 hours on standby. So while it seems small, how long are you really going to hold your finger to your head in hand-phone formation?
Most importantly, along the bottom side of the body, Origami Labs has provided a bone conduction actuator which is what allows for the audio to pass through the ring and turn your otherwise lame appendage into a fully functioning hand-phone. You’ll also be able to call on Siri or Google Assistant if you need tech support for your new finger-phone or any other internet-based query.
ORII has already surpassed its $30,000 Kickstarter goal having raised a total of $128,892 at the time of writing. Early Bird backers can currently pre-order an ORII for $119 or $40 off the eventual retail listing. Shipping is scheduled for February 2018.
While ORII will ship with silicone inserts for fine adjustments, Origami Labs will be sending out a ring gauge to get everyone sized up properly ahead of the 2018 ship date. You’ll also be able to choose between four different colorways at that time as well: matte black, sandblasted silver, metallic dark gray and armor red.