Connected Objects Wearables

Magnet provides a touch of reassurance to remote lovers

While we can’t be with our loved ones all the time, we can still say hi to them through e-mail, text or phone calls. We can see them with the help of Skype, Google Hangout or FaceTime. However, we can’t touch them when separated. Magnet offers the next best thing. Worn as either a wristband or necklace, Magnet lets you communicate with your partner through touch. Each person wears their Magnet and connects to the accompanying app. Using Bluetooth LE technology, you can touch your Magnet in a certain pattern, say three short taps. That same pattern is then transmitted to its partner, lighting up and vibrating in the same sequence.

With Magnet, you can send little coded messages to whomever you’d like and it’s just like you’re touching them. This product comes in four different colors with the choice of different kinds of necklaces or wristbands to go with it. While Magnet seems like one of those sentimental items that some of us may scoff at, it’s actually a very sweet idea, capturing the beauty of an intimate relationship from far away. For $138, any couple can get a pair of Magnets for estimated delivery in July 2015, provided the creators reach their $60,000 goal on Kickstarter.


Zubits keep your laces in magnetically held places

Shoe-tying is learned early on in life… for the fortunate. For those who don’t like laces, slip-on shoes and Velcro are always options. Zubits lets sneaker enthusiasts use magnets to secure their shoes. The laces are woven through two small magnets that secure together in the middle. The magnets used are extremely strong for maximum security. Zubits are compatible with many different types of sneakers as long as they have laces. One pair will cost backers $20 with choice of color and size for estimated delivery in January 2015. These sneaker fasteners hope to raise $29,000 on Kickstarter.

People love anyway to make their lives easier. ZIPPED uses the same concept, but turns laces into zippers rather than magnets. Zubits are easier to use and less gaudy-looking than ZIPPED. Although, Zubits will need to over more color and design choices to really excite backers. Still, the alternative fastening technique’s convenience may prove too much for backers to resist.


Hack x Tack uses magnets to keep your lens cap from straying

Hack x TackLosing lens caps is a part of any photographer’s life. Some caps attach to cameras with a string, but these can be intrusive when trying to capture a cool shot. The Hack x Tack made out of steel and wood uses magnets keep lens caps from getting lost. This small clip attaches to your clothes or bag and grabs onto the cap with a magnet that adheres to the front of the lens cap. The magnet is entirely device safe and goes for $24 CAD with an estimated delivery date of August 2014. The Toronto-made Hack x Tack has a $25,000 CAD goal over 31 days on Kickstarter.

Apparel Fitness

KeyClip keeps keys from bouncing in the breeze

KeyClipAthletes who enjoy running or cycling outside constantly face the problem of where to put their keys while exercising. They either run the risk of being uncomfortable or of putting their keys in an unsafe place. KeyClip is a small magnetic pouch that holds your key securely while you jog. It then clips directly to your clothing for safekeeping. The strong magnet ensures it will stay put, much like the Nunchuk clip. One of these clips goes for a $20 pledge with an estimated delivery date of October 2014. KeyClip hopes to raise $15,000 in a 45-day stint on Kickstarter.

Cell Phone Accessories

Neutron S is a magnetic square that keeps your smartphone there

The Premise. Aaah, vacation time! The car is packed, hotel booked and route preplanned in your favorite mobile. But one question looms as you seek to keep your smartphone’s maps available at a glance. Can’t anyone make a mounting device that’s at least a halfway decent and also provides easy viewing? Ananda Svarupa Das of Bunglejungle has had a very similar thought – only he likely believes that his solution is well beyond halfway decent.

The Product. The Neutron S offers quick attachment or removal and works with nearly any phone or tablet whether in its case or not. Machined from solid aerospace aluminum, bead-blasted and anodized, it complements even top Apple and Android devices. The mounting mechanism consists of shielded permanent neodymium magnets that won’t lose their hold and are hindered by neither burger grease covered fingers, the sweat of sultry summer days, nor frigid winter nights. The magnets offer easy mounting: a metal surface or the supplied 3MVHB tape, which is apparently similar to duct tape in effectiveness — only less bulky and no fun colors for adventurous types. Neutron S itself, however, comes in sleek matte black or attention-grabbing silver.

Its slim attachment disk is about the diameter and depth of a penny and has the really cool Bunglejungle palm tree logo etched on it. The attachment disk goes on the backside of a mobile device or case for easy flaunting and potential prompting from friends and passers-by of, “Hey, what’s that really cool silver disked palm tree thingy stuck on your mobile’s backside, dude?”

The Pitch. The video for the $10,000 campaign was designed with showing and not telling in mind. The upbeat music is cleverly coordinated with the click of various mobile devices attaching to their corresponding mounts. On the few occasions that written phrases clarify a point of importance, the print could be darker so that the words are easier to read. It’s notable that no magnetism passes through the Neutron S to mobile devices, making it safe for all mobile devices. Bunglejungle has had campaigns on Kickstarter before and Ananda Svarupa Das indicates that he and his colleges have learned a great deal from that. They seem to be well suited and organized to follow through with the project.

The Perks. There are eight tiers from which backers may choose. The $15 early bird offers backers a complete product; if it’s exhausted, though, the $20 level will still offer about a $10 discount from the expected retail price. Estimated delivery is April 2014 for most of the levels.

The Potential. Neutron S will be useful to anyone who has a recent metal iPhone and and wants to enjoy the convenience of hands-free availability. Of course, those with plastic phones — and there are many — will either have to stick to adhesive or find some metallic case or plate attracted to magnets. There are other magnetic mounts and holders on the market, but the Neutron S is considerably smaller, convenient and attractive.