Today, a jury of 40 independent design experts awarded the Finnish wearable health tech company Oura Health Ltd. with the prestigious 2018 Red Dot Award for product design for its new Oura rings.

Source: Oura Health Ltd.Source: Oura Health Ltd.

Oura rings are wearable devices that can help to better understand how human activities and lifestyle choices affect sleep. Designed to be worn 24-hours a day, the high-tech device — called a “ring-sized computer” by its manufacturer — fits on any finger and measures body temperature, pulse amplitude, respiration rate, the exact time between heartbeats — which is known as inter-beat-interval (IBI) or heart rate variability (HRV) — and hand and finger movements (with built-in accelerometer) of the user.

How it Works

The information is generated by three sensors: a three-dimensional accelerometer, a heart-rate monitor and a temperature sensor. The three bumps inside the ring depicted in the picture are the three dynamic sensors. According to the information collected, it calculates, among other parameters, heart rate, sleep pattern and respiration time.

The Oura Ring, showing the location of the three sensors. Source: Oura Health, Ltd.The Oura Ring, showing the location of the three sensors. Source: Oura Health, Ltd.

Besides the normal data collected as described above, the device records data in two modalities: when the wearer is awake it monitors activity time and inactive time, while during the night it monitors mainly the sleep stages and the brain activities. In addition, it records total sleep time, the percentage of time the user is really sleeping, latency (how long it takes to start sleeping) and disturbances during sleep, among other activities.

The App

All data monitored by the sensors is stored in the smartphone via Bluetooth LE and displayed on a free App. With this information, the App will generate data and messages that are sent to the user's phone that help the user to learn the benefits of specific activities, recommendations on how to improve the user’s sleep and how the wearer can adjust daily activities to achieve better health. The expectation is that users get more restorative sleep and align their lifestyle to their natural circadian rhythm.

The ring App showing basic information. Source: Oura Health, Ltd.The ring App showing basic information. Source: Oura Health, Ltd.

Today’s award reflects the continuous design improvements that Oura Health has been doing to the eight ring sizes they've produced since its last release of the ring. The new Oura ring was announced on November 30, 2017, and as of today, more than 20,000 rings have been pre-ordered from more than 50 countries.

"Success in the competition is proof of the good design quality of the products and once again shows that companies are on the right path. When I speak about good design, I am referring to more than just an attractive product. All of the products are characterized by outstanding functionality. This demonstrates that the designers have understood their clients and their needs,” said Professor Dr. Peter Zec, founder and CEO of the Red Dot Award.

We set the bar very high when it came to designing the new range of rings,” says Kari Kivelä, CTO, co-founder and head of design at Oura. “The project started with numerous different design concepts, and through a process of continual refinement, we finally settled on three unique ring designs.“

All eight sizes from each of the new Oura rings were designed individually, as we wanted to make sure every ring was functional both as a piece of jewelry and technology — while still being comfortable to wear and beautiful to look at. The new Oura rings are the result of hundreds of iterative steps measured in tenths of a millimeter towards a collection of rings you want to cherish and own,” concluded Kivelä.

The first new Oura rings will be shipped at the end of April 2018. During pre-orders that end on April 30, 2018, the rings are available starting from US$249/264 €.