I’ll Pass on the Vibrating Finger Bling, Thanks

Cruising through my Facebook feed the other day, I found a sponsored post for Ringly. Don’t get me wrong … I find new tech exciting and a lot of it blows my mind, like Tesla’s electric car technology and 3D-printed prosthetic limbs. But a ring that tells me, via lights and vibrations, that I have a text message?

Cruising through my Facebook feed the other day, I found this sponsored post nestled between my women’s cycling group post about vehicle safety and a college bestie’s status update:

Ringly Facebook Sponsored PostI actually uttered, “What the …” A ring that pairs with your smartphone to notify you of “what matters”?

Don’t get me wrong … I find new tech exciting and a lot of it blows my mind, like Tesla’s electric car technology and 3D-printed prosthetic limbs. But a ring that tells me, via lights and vibrations, that I have a text message?

No. No thank you.

Now, before I got too steeped in curmudgeoness, I decided to look up Ringly, check out the wearable’s website — which is rather pretty — and read a few articles to better understand the device.

https://youtu.be/C5c06ayfTYs

The video … well, first, a lady prancing rather carefree doesn’t help sell this to me. If she’s so carefree, then couldn’t she handle picking up her phone to read notifications (or just ignore them)? What about the rest of us, juggling work and personal emails, social media notifications, phone calls from our mothers, etc., while still functioning in the offline world?

Then the opening line kills it for me: “With Ringly, you can live freely while staying connected to the things that matter most.”

First World Problem MemeI have SO many problems with this. People need to stop subscribing to this #firstworldproblem that we HAVE to be tethered to our phones. Are many of us? Yes. The solution? Put it down. Turn it off. You don’t need MORE solutions beyond that.

In other words, I strongly feel I don’t need to spend $195 for a heavy “smart” ring that will only last three years (you can’t replace the battery) to live freely. Maybe this makes me a bad millennial, or bad techie, but I just can’t do it.

Reading a review of Ringly on Tech Insider, the ring the reviewer received was described as bulky, with one coworker telling her it looked like “a toy that you might find in a gumball machine for 50 cents.” Another article from TechCrunch explained how, unlike the AppleWatch or Pebble, Ringly only notifies you — it doesn’t let you take action.

I understand that the team from Ringly is trying to stake its claim on the wearable-as-classy-jewelry market. But it failed on the classy jewelry side, and to be honest, it has me wondering if they really asked themselves the most important question: “Why?” Why are we doing this?

A bulky, vibrating, lighting-up piece of jewelry that is possibly more distracting than having your phone out? Is this a piece of wearable technology that is really necessary?

You tell me. Leave me a comment below!

Author: Melissa Ward

Melissa Ward is the managing editor for Target Marketing, and she has opinions! More importantly, she's a nerd for great copy and design, a disciple of authenticity, and really loves it when marketers get it right.

3 thoughts on “I’ll Pass on the Vibrating Finger Bling, Thanks”

  1. Cheryl, I think yours is a sane perspective. Why have we all bought into the fantasy that we have to be on call 24/7. Who among us is that important, or willing to jump on command? It’s counterproductive.

    Being off-line is the equivalent of “hold my calls” from MadMen days. Gadgets to help us manage our gadget (phone) more effectively? No thanks.

    1. Hey Melanie, I completely agree. I’m not a huge fan of the Apple Watch or Pebble either. I’ve seen friends more often then not get a notification on their watch, then pull out their phone.

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