Friday, April 19, 2024

This smart ring has a feature you would never expect

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A promotional image of a person using the Wizpr smart ring.Wizpr

At the moment, smart rings are all about tracking your sleep and activity — but the new Wizpr Ring does something very different. Rather than watching over how many steps you take or how much sleep you have, it puts the magic of AI on your finger, so you can do everything from controlling smart home devices and replying to messages to sending out emergency alerts — all by whispering into it.

You probably guessed it wouldn’t be necessary to shout at the Wizpr Ring given its name (Wizpr, whisper, get it?), and all it takes to activate the listening feature is to raise your finger to your mouth, Dr. Evil-style if that’s your thing. This also eliminates the need for a wake word, making it feel more natural to use. It’s promised the system will remove background noise, increasing privacy even when you’re talking into it near other people.

Wizpr

The features announced so far include contextual conversations with the AI system on everything from the weather to sending and receiving messages, plus speech-to-text transcription, checking and working with calendar events, and controlling smart home devices. The ring will recognize English, French, German, Spanish, Japanese, and Korean languages. You aren’t limited to a single AI assistant either, and the Wizpr Ring lets you switch between different ones — including ChatGPT and Google Gemini — by pressing the button on the ring itself.

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Made of titanium and resin, the Wizpr Ring weighs four grams and will come in sizes from six to 13. It is IPX4-rated for water resistance and is available in either black or silver. The smart ring has a split design, much like the Movano Evie smart ring. It connects to an app on your phone using Bluetooth and wireless earbuds, and the battery is expected to last for 90 hours of regular use or 14 hours with a continuous voice connection.

Wizpr

Unusually, there seems to be no activity or sleep tracking on the Wizpr Ring at all, unlike the Oura Ring and Ultrahuman Ring Air, and the AI features make it more like new-wave, AI-centric mobile products like the Humane AI Pin and the Rabbit R1. The Wizpr Ring will launch on Kickstarter in the near future with a $139 early bird price, rising to $199 if you miss out.

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Before you rush off and put down your money, don’t forget there’s always a degree of risk when you back a crowdfunding campaign, particularly regarding delivery dates. Also, while this isn’t an activity-tracking smart ring, much of the advice we give about buying a smart ring for the first time still applies.

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