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Thanks to Fitbit and Apple Watch, wrist wearables have become almost as ubiquitous as smartphones. Sporting the latest wearable on your wrist signals to the world that you’re an early adopter who is on the cutting edge of tech.
A Kickstarter campaign is hoping you’ll ditch your fitness trackers and smartwatches to wear an HD wide-angle camera on your wrist instead.
Cleep is an Italian-designed wrist wearable with an embedded 150º 13mp camera that snaps photos and videos whenever you want, no smartphone required.
Here’s the plan for this product, which at press time has just 10 days to go and is about $2,000 away from its goal: Once you bring your arm up to chest height, Cleep’s camera turns on. You can then press the top button once to snap a picture or twice to record a nine-second video. Hold the button down to record for as long as you like. They’re automatically saved to the internal memory card and sent to your phone over Bluetooth.
If you’re trying to choose between a wrist camera and a fitness tracker, Cleep’s got you covered. It also utilizes activity tracking to provide metrics like steps, miles traveled, and calories burned in the app. Check out their campaign video below for more details on how Cleep works:
According to the video, Cleep was born of a desire to capture moments while staying in the moment, i.e. without a phone in front of your face. If I’m being honest, I didn’t get the appeal of Cleep until I started thinking about it in that context. Especially when traveling, the desire to document your trip can be in direct opposition to the enjoyment of the experience. Sure, you may look a little silly holding your arm up like you’re blocking a punch, but no less silly than you look taking a selfie in front of the Mona Lisa.
Cleep’s Kickstarter headline claims that it’s “the world’s first wearable wrist camera” which a quick Google will tell you isn’t true, but it’s for sure the sleekest. Jet.com lists theirs as a “spy camera” that’s made to look like a fitness tracker, though it doesn’t appear to be app-enabled. Beoncam, another crowdfunded device, seems to be the most direct competitor with similar functionality. It’s much more bulky than Cleep, though, and is more like a wrist-mounted GoPro than strictly a wearable.
The Kickstarter campaign wraps up on December 18 and at the time of writing is tantalizingly close to its goal. You can pre-order a Cleep now, in a small or medium size, at the early bird price of €129 (about $152) which is 50% off retail price. Or, for €20 more, you can pick up the travel pack, which includes a case, power adapter, and an SD card to expand the memory.
If you can’t bear to give up your Apple Watch, maybe you can make stacking your wearables like bangles the cool new trend — or, you know, just wear it on the other wrist. You do have two after all.