> Warren Buffett Blog: Warren Buffett believes in Wearable tech and Richline Group

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Warren Buffett believes in Wearable tech and Richline Group

"Jewelry is a centuries-old business that isn't going anywhere, so it's a safe bet. With the addition of technology, we're simply updating something everyone knows and loves to better fit our modern age." - Warren Buffett


Warren Buffett is embracing wearable technology. The billionaire investor, who has been cautious about investing in the tech sector in the past, is diving into wearables with a new smart jewelry line produced by his company Berkshire Hathaway's jewelry subsidiary Richline Group.

The line, dubbed Ela, will debut this spring, starting with smart wristwear—but don't expect to see a smartwatch from the get-go. Ela has been working on elegantly designed smart bracelets and plans to extend into other product categories, including rings and earrings, in the future. 

Ela devices will connect to both Android and iOS devices and share activity data with Apple's HealthKit and Google Fit, although the specific activity sensors that each device will have are unknown. Ela devices will also receive smartphone notifications, and the user can set gems on the device to glow in different colors and vibrate depending on the alert they're receiving.

Cliff Ulrich, product innovation manager for the Richline Group, told ZDNet that a goal was to create devices that are more than just "prettier step trackers." Ela devices will also have their own mobile app with which users can create "memories" that can be shared with a specific device. Content like photos, voice recordings, and songs can be preloaded to Ela devices so that users who are given the device as a gift can open up the content on their smartphones and relive "special memories" they have with the gifter.