Wearable technology is rapidly becoming the norm for all types of users. However, Nikolaj Hviid is stepping up the smart tech game with the creation of The Dash. The Dash is an in-ear information system devised to let an individual listen to music, measure health, and communicate and track performance. The intention is for the product to function as in-ear personal assistant.
The touch-sensitive pad on the right ear enables the wearer to browse through a library of 1,000 MP3s, and switch between ambient and noise-cancelling modes. Individuals can also choose to accept or decline phone calls. The pad on the left side of the ear monitors typical biometric data such as pulse, respiration rate and blood-oxygen levels. The device goes beyond traditional fitness tracking by providing live integrated smart coaching through a run, swim, cycle or workout.
While some compare The Dash to Google Glass, Hviid explains that the Google Glass is quite literally too in the consumer’s face. He simply states, “If you want to help people while they are doing something, it has to be a discreet interface. It can’t take the attention away from what they’re doing.” Hviid goes on to explain hearing is, “completely different. It is a parallel interface. You can hear everything at the same time. So, if you want to make a discreet personal assistant, the ear is better than the eye.”
The Dash plans to use its own operating system, running on a 32-bit ARM processor (with access to 4GB of flash memory) to collect, clean, sort and interpret data from a cluster of sensors that have been incorporated into the device. The 100mAh LiPo battery will reportedly deliver up to four hours of music without recharge. A notable feature is that customers will be able make customizable head gestures to control the device; for example, nodding to take a call. The Dash uses two LEDs (red and infrared) to monitor and accurately capture biometric data.
The company aims to ship the first batch of 15,000 units to Kickstarter investors this month, and 10,000 more by Christmas. The Dash is currently available for pre-order for $299.
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