Puls review

This is not the smartwatch, or 'smart cuff,' you're looking for


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I don't think I've had a more infuriating experience with a device before the Puls. It's a brave venture but one that hasn't been completely thought out or fully tested yet.

Will.i.am Puls

We like

AneedA is like the little sister to Cortana, Siri and Google Now. It can't do as much as the other ladies but it sure gives the good 'ol college try, which is good enough for me.

Standalone voice calling is also the best part of the Puls. It's what I wanted the Gear S to be and where I think other wearables should head for the best functionality.

Gear S and Puls

We dislike

Sorry Puls, but there's plenty to dislike here - almost too much. The design, display, lack of apps, battery life, the worst texting experience ever … I think that'll do.

Final verdict

Whenever a celebrity ventures into a space that isn't their own, it's difficult to take them seriously. But Will.i.am has consistently shown enough interest in tech over the years to make me believe he genuinely cares about it. Yes, many jokes can be made at his expense but a part of me remembers there's still a team behind the figurehead trying to make the Puls work.

This doesn't mean the Puls will be successful though. The wearables scene is quickly becoming over-saturated with people already rolling their eyes at the very mention of a "new smartwatch." The fashion angle also probably won't cut it for the smart cuff because, well, frankly it's pretty ugly.

The Puls as a whole has a long, long (very long) way to go before it reaches consumer wrists. It's the least intuitive wearable I've come across and the most buggy. Again, I'll mention this is a first-gen device that likely won't see mass production - which is good for everyone. The $399 (about £258, AU$511) price isn't wallet friendly and the company would probably take massive losses shipping it out.

The fact that it's a been touted as a "standalone communications device," or untethered wearable, is perhaps the best feature about the Puls - and may keep the smart cuff alive. Now, the Puls team just needs to fix everything else.