The world of smart wearables has brought fashion and tech in the kind of coupling we are into in our ever connected world today. It sounds futuristic and cool, a commixture of two sleek worlds that once had nothing to do with each other — but speed up to the present and you’ll find they’re now fully aligned. Everything from fashion shopping sites with their own apps to wearables, including smartwatches and fitness trackers, are the advancement of fashion-tech. Even 94 year old fashion accessory icon Iris Apfel, has welcomed tech in her life with a recent collaboration with wearables line Wise Wear.
When approaching the right smart tech jewelry for you, design is the first to consider. It should go without saying that function without design, is just not “fashion-tech.” Second should be what functions are the most important to you. The premise of wearable technology is to get you the information you need, when you need it, without you having to dig for your phone through the black hole that you call your purse.
The best look is a look of engagement people, and not the one where you’re constantly gazing at your phone in the presence of good company. That’s where smart rings come into play. Today we spotlight the super powers of the smart ring, which would seem like a match-made in heaven— but of course not all are created equally.
With its minimal and non-chunky design, Ringly is a customizable, connected smart ring. Ringly does not have an LED display, rather it gives off a subtle amount of colored light that shines through when you get a notification. Through its app, you can select everything from which notifications you want sent to the ring, to color and vibration alerts that let you know what type of update your phone just received. This way, you can immediately identify between a text from your work and a new follower on Instagram. Each ring comes adorned with a precious stone — emerald, quartz, sapphire, or moonstone — and subtly vibrates as you receive calls, texts, emails, calendar alerts, and an abundance of other notifications you would otherwise need your smartphone to view. Pricing starts at $195, and only comes in ring sizes of 6,7, and 8.
Wise Wear isn’t a ring that sits on your finger per se, but is a ring nonetheless in fashionable bracelet form. Wise Wear’s conception was inspired by the founder, Dr. Wilmink’s own experience of losing his grandfather to a fatal fall, which led him to create a line that utilizes an antenna system that could transmit Bluetooth signals through metal. It is the breakthrough technology that fuels WW’s Socialite smart bracelets, which is the collaboration with style icon Iris Apfel.
Socialite bracelets can’t detect falls just yet, but it can track your activity, provide vibrating mobile notifications, and send distress signals to your loved ones in times of potential danger. The unique safety feature is one that Iris values most, stating that, “something like this can alert those who care about me if I take a flop because falling can be very dangerous, particularly when you get old in age.” By tapping the bracelet to your custom sequence (i.e. three taps), Socialite sends a discreet text message to your pre-approved list of contacts, notifying them of your exact location. Beyond falls, you can also tap the bracelet when feeling vulnerable, threatened, or endangered. Iris made a point that, “this is not just technology that’s useful for elderly people; there are a lot of young people that can benefit as well. The Socialite bracelet can measure your activity, how active you are, and all kinds of good stuff. We don’t want any couch potatoes in the crowd.” Gentle vibrations notify you to check your phone for important calls, texts and reminders. Prices start from $295, which is justifiable due to its uncompromised luxury and discreet design.
Next on our list is the NFC ring, which comes a little bit more unisex in design. Its primary function is to unlock doors and smartphones, transfer information and link people. The ring packs two NFC tag inlays – one for public information and one for more private info. The private tag – for things such as your door lock and payment information – sits on the inner part of the ring closest to the palm, so that it requires a deliberate gesture to use. The public portion, for information you want to give out, like your email address, sits on the top side of your finger. Waterproof up to 50m, the ring comes in a range of subtle designs including ceramic coated in gloss black. A major plus with NFC’s rings is that it never needs charging.
This ring is ideal for people who are constantly on the go, who needs transactions fast and easy. With Kerv, wearers have their money at all times. Forgot your wallet? No problem. Kerv, is the world’s first contactless payment ring. Kerv is engineered from aerospace-grade zirconia technical ceramic, and available in either black or white outside and a range of colours inside. But whichever color you choose, Kerv’s sleek outer shell is lightweight, hypoallergenic and almost as scratch-resistant as diamond. Perfect for those who like to go for that morning run, and stopping for a pressed juice afterwards without the clunky hassle of carrying your wallet in hand. Prices start at $60 USD.