After two and a half years of development, Will.i.am finally unveiled the smart "cuff" he has been working on with his consumer electronics company, i.am+. The Puls is a wearable wristband that tells time, but "it's not a watch," the Black Eyed Peas singer said repeatedly on stage at Dreamforce in San Francisco. The key difference is that the Puls makes phone calls and accesses online services using a 3G radio. Puls will launch on carriers AT&T in the United States and O2 in the United Kingdom.
Will.i.am positioned the device as more fashionable than competing devices, and positioned the Puls as a device for communicating, playing music, and monitoring fitness. A demonstration of the device's fitness capabilities showed the Puls counting repetitions of a strength exercise. Earlier in the presentation, an AT&T executive said the device is "enabling a millennial to fashionably tweet from her wrist while clubbing," marking the first time those words have ever been in a sentence together.
There was no word on the Puls' battery life. At the end of the event, Will.i.am brought models out on stage who were wearing clothing that contained battery packs capable of transferring battery power to the Puls as long as part of it remained in contact with the sleeve. A jacket worn by one model is capable of powering the watch for two and a half days, he said. Technology should be part of more of the things we wear, Will.i.am. said. "Pardon me for dreaming, but fuck it — let's dream," he said.
No pricing or release information is available yet for the Puls. The device has been repeatedly delayed this year, with planned release slipping from the spring to the summer to "around the holidays." It will be available in black, white, pink, and blue. There will also be a solid-gold Puls and one with gold and diamonds, Will.i.am said. The Puls is the company's second product after the foto.sosho, an ill-fated iPhone camera case with a slide-out keyboard.