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Summary:

A wearable focused on authentication may be coming next year from a new wearable computing company and a hot design studio.

Neptune Pine

The startup behind the world’s first Android watch phone, the Neptune Pine, is partnering up with the designers of Misfit’s Shine wearable, Pearl Studios. The result will be a line of wearable devices, the first of which could focus on the issue of authentication, Neptune Computer founder and CEO Simon Tian told me in an interview.

Tian, who just turned 20 years old, says such a wearable device could be an automatic and seamless way to authenticate computers, open doors or “be a key to everything in your life.” This type of authentication wearable could add more security than a password or pincode, but with less expense than some of the authentication methods like retina or finger print scanners.

Misfit Shine

Tian didn’t elaborate much beyond that brief description about the types of wearables the team plans to work on, but said the partners will not be focused on activity monitors since many companies have already worked on those products. The first device from the collaboration could be out next year. Tian and Pearl Studios’ CEO Mladen Barbaric plan to make the announcement about the new partnership at the Wearable Technology Conference and Expo on Monday in London.

Neptune Computers, which has about 10 full time employees, has spent the last several months putting the finishing touches on the Android watch phone, the Neptune Pine. It had a high-profile successful campaign on Kickstarter, raising over $800,000. Tian tells me the company is on track to ship the watch in late March to its Kickstarter backers and in the summer to retail outlets. The watch is slightly behind schedule in terms of shipping and was supposed to be sent to Kickstarter backers earlier this year.

Tian admits that when he first started working on the Neptune Pine, he was pretty inexperienced — in fact, he had just gotten out of high school. But Pearl Studios’ Barbaric says that Tian was able to accomplish an amazing feat on a small budget, in a short time period, compared to the large consumer electronics companies. Neptune Computers plans to start raising a Series A round, potentially between $10 million and $15 million, this spring.
  1. I have no idea if this device will be a success or not but, wow, when I was getting out of high school I had no idea what I wanted to do let alone taking almost a million dollars in investment capital and building a electronic device. That’s impressive.

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