Why, though? The smart ring that wasn’t

A smart ring promised that users could control devices with gestures like magic. They could not.

In 2014, Logbar Inc. raised $880k on Kickstarter — far beyond its $250k goal — to make a ring that was “like magic.”

The Logbar ring on a blue background, flanked by two arms gesturing thumbs-down.

It allowed wearers to control devices with gestures, something I’m sure we’ve all fantasized about since the first time we saw Star Wars.

Unfortunately, the one ring to rule them all… did not.

The concept

Logbar claimed the ring could detect commands from the wearer, then communicate them to Bluetooth or WiFi-enabled devices. Users could:

  • Send texts by writing in the air.
  • Pay bills by gesturing a check mark.
  • Control smart-home devices like they had a magic wand.
  • Receive alerts via vibration and LED lights.

Logbar sounded impressive and demoed well. Its inventor, Takuro Yoshida, won the TechCrunch Tokyo Startup Battle in 2013, and in 2014, Entrepreneur called it one of the “very few wow-factor gadgets” at SXSW that year.

The problem

It didn’t reliably do any of that stuff. YouTuber Snazzy Labs demonstrated several key issues with the $269 ring, including:

  • It was huge — far too bulky to fit comfortably on a finger.
  • The wireless charger was not wireless.
  • Users had to have associated apps open for gestures to work, meaning it didn’t really save people time.
  • Plus, the gestures only worked “about 5% of the time.”

Logbar’s Kickstarter backers were similarly unimpressed. Many commented that they’d never received a ring, while those who did complained that it hardly worked.


… wearable tech is popular, at least for health tracking. Oura has sold 1m+ of its rings, is valued at $2.55B, and will soon sell its products via Amazon. Samsung will launch its competitor later this year.

But if you still want something that makes you feel like a magician, you could try to get a Neuralink chip implanted in your brain — founder Elon Musk claims the startup’s first patient can control a mouse with their mind.

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