Touchsreens are all the rage these days, featuring in our laptops as much as our tablets and smartphones, but while they might have brought about revolutions in screen size, clarity and function, they create one real problem: you can’t use them with gloves. There are of course some specifically designed to work with touch screens, but when you’re wearing bulky ones that can still be problematic – unless you make the gloves able to control the device wirelessly.
That’s where Beartek’s products come in.
Beartek’s gloves come in three distinct flavours, designed with different sports and activities in mind. There’s the Classic pair, which has the most basic of functionality, the Snow set for those that like their winter sports and the Moto range, for motorcycle riders. Each one however, features bluetooth functionality, allowing you to control your mp3 player or smartphone without going anywhere near its touch screen.
As the most cost effective of the lot, the classic seems likely to be the most popular of the bunch. Made from premium leather and insulated to keep your hands warm in even some of the nastiest of environments, the gloves also come with two different modules. One of them is for your smartphone, letting you control music, calls and other simple functions on your phone without going near it. When it’s installed, just touch your fingers together in certain ways and you’ll have full functionality.
The secondary module is for cameras with bluetooth connectivity, but specifically GoPro cameras. With that module installed, you can control the camera’s basic functions, letting you set it up and take shots of yourself and others, or have it mounted on you and still control it without risking the chance of dislodging it from the perfect spot. It also keeps your hands free for other tasks, which when you’re doing something action orientated, is likely to be a good thing.
Each Beartek set of gloves will last for up to 80 hours and features rechargeable batteries. They’re lightweight and can be used for everyday activities as well if you choose. The palms and thumbs also have reinforced pads, for added grip.
The Classics are currently priced at $95, which works out at around £55. The Snow range is more expensive at $120, while the priciest of the lot, the Moto range, will set you back $145. Unfortunately though, none of these come with the wireless modules as standard. You have to buy them separately and they cost another $140 each.
Cost is a big problem here. The gloves are already reasonably expensive when you price them on their own, but if you’re looking at spending almost $300 on a top of the line Moto pair and a single module, it’s getting very costly. On top of that, it’s not that clear that you need to do this in the storefront, so I’m sure these gloves have been bought without people realising they need to dish out another £80 or so just for the module.
While I like the look of these gloves and think that for some, they’ll be perfect, they’re very expensive for what they are. However, none of the sorts of hobbies that require this kind of hardware are. A GoPro remote control is £80 on its own, so maybe getting a pair of gloves as part of the bargain isn’t such a bad thing.