Bluetooth earbuds haven’t garnered the best of reputations on Kickstarter as of late, but Ashley Chloe still hopes to make a splash with its Helix cuff bracelet.
On the outside, the Helix looks like a cuff bracelet intended for fitness. There are three magnets on one side of the loop that connect with the other side, thus allowing you to properly adjust the Helix to your wrist. It’s a “one-size-fits-all” approach to design. However, the Helix has one awesome trick up its sleeve: a discreet storage compartment that stores a pair of Bluetooth earbuds.
Updated on 08-03-2015 by Malarie Gokey: Added news that the Helix Cuff wearable is fully funded on Kickstarter.
With chief designer Mika Nenonen at the helm, Ashley Chloe wanted to design a headset that delivers on value and design, while also making it as convenient to access your headphones as possible. The company seeks to find the crossroads between fashion and technology with the Helix. So far, it looks like the Helix has resonated with people on Kickstarter. The campaign already surpassed its fundraising goal of $100,000, but preorders will continue until September 17 on the crowdfunding site.
As for the earbuds themselves, they are held together by a control unit that seamlessly goes on the Helix. The earbuds’ footprint is smaller than a standard U.S. quarter’s, so sound quality is likely the biggest question mark here. Ashley Chloe promises the buds deliver hi-fidelity stereo sound with an impedance of 16 ohms. In addition, because the Helix doubles as a pair of in-ear buds, it delivers passive noise isolation.
The Helix can connect to up to 8 devices, one at a time, using dual-mode Bluetooth 4.1 Low Energy. In other words, the earbuds shouldn’t zap your connected device’s battery when you’re using them. Speaking of connected devices, because the Helix uses Bluetooth, it can connect to iOS, Android, or any wearable device that supports a connection to wireless headphones.
Because these are rather small earbuds, the Helix can only play for up to three hours, with 200 hours of standby time. Charging the Helix should be quick, however, as it can be charged from empty to full in less than an hour.
If you want to get your hands on the Helix, your best bet would be through its Kickstarter campaign. The classic Helix, available in black and white with either silver or champagne gold detailing, is available for $100 for 1,000 super early birds. Regular early birds can get it for $150. If you want your hands on the 18k gold version, however, you can fork over $250. When widely available, the classic and 18k gold Helix variants will go for $200 and $300, respectively.