It was announced late in 2014 that Kovert Designs' first product, the modular Altruis, would be the first smart jewellery on sale alongside the regular designer bling at the luxury online fashion site Net-a-Porter. At first we were told to expect it in January - which has been and gone - but now it's confirmed, Altruis will be available to buy on Net-a-Porter from February.
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Altruis is iPhone compatible only and the stone itself, which contains the tech, can be worn as a ring, bracelet or necklace and vibrates when you get priority notifications. Simple as that. You can set profiles (dinner, meeting, holiday, Sunday) to easily switch between settings for how much you want to be disturbed, down to specific apps, contacts or keywords.
Kate Unsworth, the founder and CEO of Kovert Designs, was explaining her design and tech philosophies at StrategyEye's 'Future of Wearable Tech' event in London. She hinted that there are two big fashion brand partnerships on the horizon in the next couple of months and that unlike six months ago, she now has a queue of companies wanting to get involved with her smart jewellery.
"Don't just build things for the sake of building things," she warned wearable tech startups. "Why would I want [a wearable] to do the same thing as my phone but on my wrist? Just because you can doesn't mean you should."
That said Unsworth hinted that her team is looking to implement subtle, intuitive new features to Altruis like shaking your hand or wrist to send an automatic 'out of office' style message to whoever is bothering you in your downtime.
"It's not just about the features, it's about the psychological effect of challenging you to consider which notifications you want to interrupt your dinner or meeting. If it's not vibrating, the idea is that you don't look at your phone."
Look out for our review of Altruis very soon, we're getting our hands on one as soon as the Kovert Designs team has completed some app updates. We don't have pockets and we stare at screens far too many hours a day so we have a sneaking suspicion it's going to completely change how we use our smartphone.
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