Humane Ai Pin: Test reports show weaknesses and limitations of the device

Since Imran Chaudhri and Bethany Bongiorno, the clever minds behind the company Humane and its product, the “Ai Pin,” are two former Apple executives, they were able to quickly finance their project. The first models of the Ai Pin, which is intended to say goodbye to smartphone use, are now being delivered. However, initial test reports from Bloomberg's Mark Gurman and the tech YouTuber Marques Brownlee show: the device can't do enough, is often wrong, isn't intuitive to use, doesn't offer sufficient networking with existing offerings and has many other weaknesses. Here you can find a summary.

The Humane Ai Pin is an interesting device, but far too expensive, too unreliable and too impractical. You can get details from two test reports with first-hand experiences here. Source of all images: Humane.com press materials
The Humane Ai Pin is an interesting device, but far too expensive, too unreliable and too impractical. You can get details from two test reports with first-hand experiences here. Source of all images: Humane.com press materials

Ai Pin test report shows weaknesses of the AI ​​wearable

Just as the hype about smart speakers is over, tablets are far from replacing computers and VR headsets are difficult to establish in everyday life, the Ai Pin will not achieve the goal of the manufacturer Humane. The device, which starts at $699 and only runs with a subscription for $24 per month (almost all services are cloud-based), also has more negative points to offer in addition to its limited usability and high price. If you summarize the relevant points from Mark Gurman's Ai Pin test, you get this quite long list:

  • During setup, the device had to be restarted several times due to bugs.
  • There is no display, but voice and touch controls that don't always work well, as well as an interface projection onto the palm of the hand.
  • Incorrect or missing display of the interface on the palm was observed several times.
  • Entering the passcode, which is necessary every time you plug in the device, is done using hand movements that take some getting used to.
  • A bug causes the input interface for the passcode to not load, making it impossible to use the Ai Pin and requiring a device restart.
  • The device has a frustratingly short battery life, even with the magnetic additional battery.
  • Some functions, such as the description of the surroundings, are useful for people with impaired vision, but have no other application.
  • The device can be quite slow or even ignore the touch gesture for voice input, resulting in no interaction at all.
  • The Ai Pin heats up to a worrying level under computing load.
  • So far there is no timer/alarm function or a calendar (to be added later).
  • There were problems connecting to the mobile network during the test.
  • Since the device is worn on clothing, it is impractical to use it in changeable climates where you have to put on and take off jackets and other layers of clothing.
  • The interface projection is difficult to see in bright environments. This undermines Humane's goal of anchoring users more in the real world (and therefore outside).
  • Voice input is inconvenient, slow and overall a hurdle for productivity tasks - i.e. for using digital devices.
  • Using it in public seems strange and interactions can be disrupted by the fact that you are constantly pointing a device with a camera at the other person.

Ai Pin as a smartphone killer: “It will never work”

The Ai Pin from Humane won't stand a chance as a replacement for a smartphone or computer. Not only does the first version, which has just gone on sale, have too little potential for this. The whole concept is too limited and not intuitive enough. Plus the whole thing is way too expensive. However, one or two good points can definitely be found: after all, the Ai Pin, when it works, seems to deliver good results from the use of various AI models and sources. Humane also ensures that a new device concept stimulates ideas on the market.

But Mark Gurman breaks it down to a few pretty simple words in his Ai Pin review: “… it will never work and it’s not worth buying.” In the best case scenario, the Ai Pin will become one among technology and AI fans Develop accessory. But since Humane doesn't have a smartphone or smartwatch app that can be used to set up the Ai Pin or extract data from it, the device won't even get a foot in the door with the general public as an accessory. And even for that the price would have to be drastically reduced. Apparently there will be no relent from Humane.

Conclusion: A proof of concept and not much more

In the said test report, due to the error-prone nature of the Ai Pin, it is noted that although Humane speaks of a “version 1.0” device, it feels like something that is far before that. With the models now issued to the first customers, Humane only manages to provide a not entirely convincing proof of concept. If the company continues to stick to its own proprietary system (which wouldn't be surprising given that there are ex-Apple executives in the company's management), then the Ai Pin could soon languish in a niche or go under completely. The current devices would then be electronic waste.

Source: Bloomberg

Ai Pin video review by Marques Brownlee

If you want to see the Humane Ai Pin in action and hear another opinion about it, I can give it to you Video review recommended by tech YouTuber Marques Brownlee. But here too, the title of the video makes it clear what his experience was like: “The Worst Product I’ve Ever Reviewed… For Now”.

At the beginning he shows what the device is actually supposed to be able to do. And then he describes why everything doesn't work properly. In particular, the waiting times between questions and answers as well as the incorrect information that is often given make the device impractical. Not to mention the carrying position. Check it out:

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1 comment on “Humane Ai Pin: Test reports show weaknesses and limitations of the device”

  1. It's just the first version. I find the device extremely exciting. And it shows where the journey could go in the future.
    I think Steve would definitely have thought about that. Just like before the first iPhone appeared, because everything else was considered impractical beforehand. Simple design and ease of use were always his priority. Form was function!

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