The electronic device manufacturers of the world have been informed that you still have a few appendages that aren’t draped in silicon. They’re working to correct that — starting with your fingers.
But can a smart ring be useful in ways that your smartphone and smartwatch aren’t? Well, that’s ultimately for you to decide. Here are the current smart rings that you can use to get updates, improve your sleep, and stay safe.
Kerv NFC Smart Ring
Kerv claims that it’s the “World’s first contactless smart ring.” You can use it pay for your coffee by literally waving your hand over the payment sensor. But it can actually do a lot more than that. It can unlock your smartphone without having to enter a code, transfer contact details, and be used anywhere there are near field communication (NFC) electronics. London residents can even use it to hop on public transportation.
While the Kerv’s minimalist design is gender neutral, Ringly’s products take a more feminine slant. Part of their appeal is that they don’t look like tech products. If you put them in a lineup with affordable rings from your local department store, it would be impossible to pick them out.
Ringly doesn’t have NFC capabilities and doesn’t have a screen. Instead, you use the Ringly app to select which notifications from your phone that you want to receive. For example, you can set it to vibrate when you get a text, but stay silent when someone likes your Instagram update (or vice versa.) You can even fine-tune the settings, so you’re only notified when you gets calls or texts from certain people.
If you want to make the notifications more complex, you can choose from four vibration patterns and five light colors.
Like Ringly, the Altrius is designed to filter your smartphone notifications so only the ones you are are most interested in directly reach you. But with its chic marketing and higher price point, it’s obviously targeted toward a more fashion-minded set.
One interesting feature of the Altruis: the “secret word.” You choose a word, and if it appears in a text or email subject line, then you receive a notification — even if you normally have texts or emails blocked. It sounds like a handy way to let your closest friends and family know how to get ahold of you immediately.
MOTA Smart Ring
The MOTA smart ring is a little closer to what you imagine when you think of “smart ring.” It features a tiny screen that shows notifications from email, Twitter, and other applications that might pop up on your phone.
The biggest advantage that is has over a smartphone? You can check updates without actually pulling out your phone. That makes it easier to quickly glance at text, calls, Tweets, or emails in a social setting without seeming rude.
Nimb Smart Ring
The Nimb smart ring has one function in mind: personal safety.
In a promotional video, the co-founder Kathy Roma says that she was inspired to make it easier to contact help after being violently assaulted in 2000. Warning to anyone who is uncomfortable with violent stories: she goes into some detail about what happened to her during the assault.
The ring is equipped with a panic button. When pressed, it contacts the authorities, friends, or simply nearby people who have expressed a willingness to help. Exactly who it contacts can be changed in the Nimb app. The creators hope it will give people quick access to help should they ever find themselves in danger.
The Moodmetric Ring wants to make you feel a little more chill.
It detects changes your nervous system by measuring skin conductance. This information helps you better understand how you react to events throughout your day, which improves your “emotional intelligence.” With greater self knowledge, the theory goes, you can better navigate your inner emotional life.
It gives you a score of your mood on a scale from 0 to 100. Anything under 25 is a zen-like peace, while anything over 75 indicates a high level of stress.
The Oura Ring also works to improve your health. Specifically, it measures your heart rate, respiration rate, and body temperature in order to understand how well-rested you are. With this data, it can provide suggestions to sleep better and improve your overall health.
Considering that sleep deprivation can lead to weight gain, traffic accidents, mental health problems, and a host of other issues, this is a smart choice for anyone who believes they aren’t getting enough shut eye.