Humane Introduces the AI Pin—The First Wearable AI Device
Almost all the articles you see in this newsletter come from my research. But this one needs to be credited to a dear friend of mine (and a subscriber) Mike Harnish. A super-secret start-up company called Humane has been teasing its first device, the AI Pin, for most of this year. This past Thursday, it finally made everything public and launched its new device. It is billed as the device for the post-smartphone world.
The Pin is a square gadget that attaches itself to objects, such as clothing, using magnets. But the clip is more than just a magnet—it's also a battery pack, so you can keep the Pin powered throughout the day by changing the battery. The device comes with two "battery boosters," although we don’t know how long a single battery will last. It tracks and records its surroundings using motion, depth, and camera sensors, and is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. It can pair with Bluetooth headphones and features an integrated speaker that Humane refers to as a "personic speaker."
Humane has devised novel methods to engage with the Pin in the absence of a screen. Although its main purpose is voice-activated, it also has a green laser projector that can display information on your palm. Because the gadget has a touchpad, you can also use gestures to interact with the Pin by holding things up to the camera. You must manually activate the Pin because it isn't always recording or even listening for a wake phrase. A "Trust Light" on it blinks on and off while the Pin is recording, so everyone knows it’s recording.
Humane prefers that the Pin not be thought of as a smartphone accessory, but as a completely independent gadget. The Pin, a charger, and those two battery boosters are yours for $699. There is also a Humane Subscription which costs $24 a month and comes with a phone number and cell data on Humane's own branded wireless service that uses T-Mobile's network, cloud storage for pictures and videos, and the capacity to query AI models indefinitely—though we're not sure which ones, precisely.
The operating system on the Pin is known as Cosmos, and Humane appears to be envisioning a more fluid system that can summon different AIs and other tools as needed, as opposed to a collection of apps. It sounds a lot like ChatGPT's plugin system, which allows you to customize your chatbot experience with additional features or data.
The Pin can convert spoken audio into multiple foreign languages and compose messages that sound like you. You can use a function that summarizes emails in your inbox. Support is available for Tidal music streaming, which uses a "AI DJ" to select songs based on your current context. Additionally, it will have AI-centric photographic functions, but it's unclear exactly what that entails.
Humane wants the Pin to be a basic, self-contained wearable, but there is a method to control it: you may set up and personalize your gadget before wearing it using an online portal called Humane.center. It's the method by which you retrieve the messages, images, and recordings you take while wearing the pin.
The company will begin taking orders on November 16. No shipping date has yet been set. If you’re in that “early adopter” class of technology consumers, have your credit card ready and decide which shirt or blouse is going to be the first to ‘hold’ your new AI Pin.