Introducing the Ōura Ring “Wellness Computer”

My Display Daily article published on March 18 was entitled “The Air A01 Mates with a Smartphone to Form a Unique Camera.” This article reported on a camera that communicates with and uses a smartphone for control and display. I now report on the Ōura ring, an entirely different kind of product but one that is configured in a similar way.

The Ōura ring by Ouraring (Oulu, Finland and San Francisco, CA), is indeed in the form of a ring. It communicates and works in collaboration with an app on either an Android or iOS smartphone. In a highly compact form, the Ōura ring is actually a standalone so-called “wellness” computer. The device is reported to bring together capabilities previously seen only in “separate measurement devices: a laboratory level sleep monitor, an accurate activity tracker and a high end heart rate monitor.”

The ring accomplishes these monitoring functions by day and night measurement of the user’s pulse waveform, the exact time between heartbeats, body temperature and even slight movements. It utilizes “refined methods of medical grade pulse-oximeters to access blood volume pulse to a high degree of accuracy.”

Based on this information, it is claimed that the app determines how well the user has recovered from the mental and physical load of normal daily life. The Ōura app then provides individualized guidance on how the user can balance their activity and rest, improve sleep and enhance their “readiness to perform.”

Ōura ring is silent and does not require any input from the user. It simply senses and processes information.

Ōura ring works without the continuous presence of a smartphone. The “processed learnings” are stored until such time as the ring is near the user’s smartphone at which time the data can be transmitted.

The Ōura ring is reported to be quite rugged. Specific mention is made of the fact that it is made of zirconium, making it harder than steel, as well as waterproof.

Oura 03 21 16The battery on the Ōura ring requires a 30-60 minutes charge about every three days. The ring comes in a ring box that doubles as a portable charger.

A video illustrating the use of the Ōura ring can be found at the end of this article.

The company was established in 2013. On August 27, 2015, Oura ring announced an agreement with Sanmina to produce the first generation Ōura ring product. To enter production, the company raised funds on Kickstarter. The campaign lasted 37 days and ended on September 24, 2015 having attracted more than 2300 investors and raising a total of over $650 000. Over 2700 rings were pre­ordered.

The ring is available in sizes from 6 to 13. It is available in white and two kinds of black finish. The price is $279. At the time this article is written, the company’s web site states that “Due to demand exceeding supply new orders will be shipped in estimated 3-5 weeks.” –Arthur Berman

Ouraring, Virpi Tuomivaara, [email protected]