Humane officially launches the AI Pin, its OpenAI-powered wearable
It's a device meant to be used for speaking instead of typing and for communicating with big language models, not applications. However, it's still unclear exactly what you're meant to use it for.
Humane finally unveiled its first product, the AI Pin, on Thursday, after months of demos and teases about what the devices of the future driven by AI would entail.
As previously disclosed, the $699 wearable consists of a square device and a battery pack that adheres to surfaces or clothing via magnetic means. A Humane subscription costs $24 per month and includes a phone number and data service on T-Mobile's network in addition to that cost. Preorders for the device go live on November 16th, the business informed Wired, and shipment will begin in early 2024.
The AI Pin is controlled by gestures, voice control, a camera, and a tiny built-in projector. It runs on a Snapdragon CPU, though it's unclear which one. The "battery booster" adds 20 grams to the roughly 34 grams that the pin weighs by itself. With a software upgrade, the integrated camera can record video in addition to taking 13-megapixel pictures.
It's not intended to be constantly recording, and it's not even listening for a wake word, in contrast to a gadget like the Rewind Pendant. To let you and presumably everyone else know that it is gathering data, the Pin's "Trust Light" blinks when you manually activate the gadget by tapping and dragging on the touchpad.
The Pin's main responsibility is to establish connections with AI models using a program called AI Mic. Although earlier reports claimed that the Pin was largely powered by GPT-4, Humane claims that ChatGPT access is actually one of the device's key capabilities. The press announcement from Humane references both Microsoft and OpenAI. Instead of requiring you to download and install programs, its operating system, Cosmos, is made to automatically direct your requests to the appropriate tools.
With the Pin, Humane is attempting to completely remove all of your device's interface clutter. It is designed to be as simple as talking to or touching the Pin, telling it what you want to do or know, and it will take care of the rest. There won't be a homescreen or numerous settings and accounts to manage. In the past year, a straightforward text command to a chatbot has made a great deal of functionality available; Humane is attempting to create a device in the same spirit.
So, the real question is: What can this thing really do? Humane's announcement today highlights most of the features co-founder Imran Chaudhri demonstrated at TED earlier this year, including voice-based calling and messaging, a "catch me up" feature that summarizes your email inbox, the ability to hold food up to the camera to get nutritional information, and real-time translation. Beyond that, though, it appears that the device's main function is to function as a wearable search engine powered by LLM. However, the company did tell Wired that it plans to add shopping and navigation features, as well as provide developers with the means to create custom tools.
Humane appears to see the AI Pin as the start of a bigger project, which is probably true: it will improve as the underlying models improve, and it looks like the entire tech sector is hard at work coming up with new applications for AI. Humane may be hoping that its product develops in a similar manner to how smartphones did: better hardware gradually enhances the user experience, but the true innovation lies in the things that can be done with the device. Although there is still much to be done in that regard, Humane seems prepared to get going.
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