Low-priced Oura ring competitor, RingConn starts shipping to early backers

Oura’s coveted health-tracking smart ring may have some stiff competition with a new, lower-budget wearable called RingConn, which has just started shipping to early backers on Indiegogo and looks to provide a fresh, affordable option to the now-limited smart ring space.

The new RingConn smart ring claims to do pretty much what the Oura does – track sleep, recovery, activity, as well as various health metrics such as heart rate variability, oxygen saturation, and temperature variations – but at $150, with no monthly app subscription. The Oura Ring Gen 3 is priced between $299 and $549 depending on the type and finish you select; plus, there is an additional monthly subscription of $5.99 that is required into order to see most of your data.

RingConn: the details

The sensor-packed RingConn comes in nine different sizes with three different titanium tones (Midnight Black, Pale Gold, Moonlit Silver) and weighs between 3 to 5 grams depending on the size. Much like the Oura, the company sends out a ring fitting kit before shipping the product so you can try different sizes for the perfect fit. Plus the ring features an outer-square, inner-circle design to maximize comfort and wearability. Although, to be honest, it still looks like a chunky metal ring that might not be that comfortable for smaller hands or for people who don’t like wearing rings, which can definitely bothersome if you use your hands a lot in your daily life or play certain sports.

Much like Oura and other smart wearables like Whoop, the RingConn’s sensors capture REM, light and deep sleep, with sleep interruptions; activity levels; and temperature, heart rate, and heart rate variability tracking, which can give wearers insights on stress levels and overall health and fluctuations throughout the day.

Users can access all of this data via the RingConn app, which is compatible with devices running IOS 12.0 and Android 8.0 and above. According to the company, you’ll get lifetime access to your data visualizations on your phone with purchase, “no ifs, no buts, and no monthly fees,” according to the company.

RingConn’s battery claims to last for seven days without recharging, and the device is rated IP68 for water resistance, meaning you can swim, shower, and do dishes without removing the ring.  

Early reviews are out

The Indiegogo campaign has been a solid success, raising nearly $1.3 million, with more than 7,000 backers purchasing the device so far. The company has shipped out two batches of rings, totaling around 1,000 devices, and is quickly ramping up production.

While it’s still early days, and we at Connect the Watts haven’t yet gotten our hands on one, reviews have been mostly pretty positive. However, grumblings have been made over a few bugs, which is pretty typical in the early stages of development, and a lack of a Readiness Score, which is Oura’s signature personalized data score that tallies up recent activity, sleep patterns, and body signals like heart rate.

Heath and sleep-tracking wearables are aplenty for consumers looking for 24-hour monitoring of their lives, from Oura to Whoop. But smart rings are still a niche market, with no competition from major companies like Apple or Fitbit, not yet anything. 9to5Google reported earlier this month that Samsung recently filed a US trademark for the “Samsung Galaxy Ring,” which is expected to be a smart ring tracking health, sleep, and fitness data. Also soon to arrive is the much-anticipated Evie from Movana, which is a slick biometric-tracking ring designed for women. We’ll keep a close eye on this space and keep you informed of what’s to come.

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