If there’s a problem with the world of ambient computing we’re all expected to live in, it’s that you can’t really be discreet. Most commands to your voice assistant of choice have to be spoken at a volume slightly higher than you would speak to another person. That’s the societal ill VTouch, a South Korean company, has chosen to tackle with its WHSP Ring. It’s a ring with a proximity sensor and microphone that activates when you raise it to your mouth. So when you want to talk to your assistant, you can simply mutter toward your knuckle and have it understand you. I saw a brief demo on the first day of CES 2024 here in Las Vegas.
The idea is that you’ll utilize VTouch’s own app, which will offer a number of AI assistants to aid you. This includes, in the example shown to me, an AI Art Curator or even a digital Psychiatrist, all of which can be accessed from your phone. You can also interact with your smart home, setting all of the usual parameters from the comfort of your hushed tones. It’ll last for around a day and a half on a single charge, while the charging case you can take around with it will extend the life by up to nine days. Any responses will, of course, be pumped through your headphones, enabling you to “chat” to your assistant. There’s even a button that, if tapped five times at once, will trigger a system to alert your contacts of an emergency and record ambient sound.
Touch is planning to launch WHSP Ring as a Kickstarter in the near future, but there’s no word yet on how much you could expect this thing to cost or when you can get your hands on one.
We’re reporting live from CES 2024 in Las Vegas from January 6-12. Keep up with all the latest news from the show here.