Smart jewelry in the making

The nine different items that they will offer range from a keychain to leather and metal bracelets, necklaces, and pendants — each with a CuffLinc embedded inside.

These days, as advancements in wearable technology abound, it is easy to see that their focus is on function rather than form. But, for wearable technology to go mainstream, things will have to change.

This is what San Francisco-based start-up, Cuff, seems to have realised. Cuff announced a whole new line of wearables with an aim of making technology that you would want to wear and show off. The accessories are also quite different from the current wearables in the market. The company is positioning its product as a security system that can help you reach a pre-defined circle of people who you trust.

The whole system works on CuffLinc. It is a small black tracker that you can place in any of the nine different accessories that the company is coming up with. It comes with an accompanying iOS app that you can set up with your CuffLinc and find people from your contacts who use the product and build your network.

The iOS app lets you go more granular with the alert mechanism. By double-clicking the CuffLinc, you can send an alert to any one of the members in your network, without the rest of them getting to know about it. The vibration system can be customised to let the recipient know whether it is a real emergency.

The people at Cuff are already thinking of various features that they can add to the device down the line. Since it is connected to your phone via Bluetooth, they feel that it can be used as a remote to call various features, including skipping a song or taking a photo, or making your phone ring to get out of a date going really bad.

These new features, enabled through a software update, can be assigned different click patterns to trigger your phone for various activities. Charging the batteries is not a problem at all. CuffLinc comes with non-replaceable batteries and each battery powers it for a year. Once you have used it for a year, you will receive a notification that will ask you to buy a new one.

The company’s ‘fashion first’ sensibility seems to be more important than the technology used. They believe that if people do not want to wear your technology, then it will never really catch on. The nine different items that they will offer range from a keychain to leather and metal bracelets, necklaces, and pendants – each with a CuffLinc embedded inside. The metal pieces come with a silver or gold plating and the leather pieces come in two colours.

They do seem to be targeting the feminine market with these first pieces, but they are undoubtedly the most stylish wearables on the market. The company envisages other makers producing jewelry that will be compatible with CuffLinc, thereby making a collection. If you do not like any of the pieces in the first set, fret not, for something else down the line might suit your taste.

It will be some time before we are able to gauge the device’s success. For, the pieces (priced at $49, $99, and $199) are ready to be pre-ordered. If you would like one of these, visit their website and pre-order one now!

The company’s ‘fashion first’ sensibility seems to be more important than the technology used.

 This article was first published on The Hindu and is available at http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-features/tp-metroplus/smart-jewellery-in-the-making/article7224755.ece

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