Dotti Review

Dotti Review
Dotti Review
Dotti Review
Dotti Review
Dotti Review
Introduction


Notifications have become an integral part with our smartphones, providing us with a discrete way of getting quick looks at certain things without being too overly distracting. For the most part, the way we experience notifications hasn’t changed all that much since the first smartphones, but Dotti is aiming to supplement the experience in ways that are exciting, fun, and attentive. What is Dotti you say? Well, it’s this neat-o and simple app-controlled pixel light that offers an intriguing alternative to the traditional way notifications are delivered to us.

Packaging contains:

  • Dotti
  • microUSB cable
  • Quick start guide

Design


In all fairness, there’s nothing ornate about Dotti’s design – it’s just a simple square-shaped plastic thing; nothing more. From the front, it looks like a cube, but the rear flaunts a hard angled design that gives Dotti a little bit more geometry. Luckily, it’s lightweight and constructed from highly durable plastic that seems to do a great job of cushioning falls. Looking around Dotti, there are very few things fashioned onto it. Specifically, the only two notable things are the microUSB port in the rear to charge Dotti, and just a pinhole sized master reset button on its underside – and that’s all!

While the premise of Dotti is direct, much like its design, there’s actually a lot of tech involved with how it operates. Peeking closely to the front surface of Dotti, there are exactly 64 square shaped boxes that hide away LEDs, which are soundly protected by a thick clear piece of plastic. Now, the 64 squares allow Dotti to produce some interesting patterns and animations with the help of those LEDs behind each one of them. On top of that, the top surface of Dotti is touch sensitive – so various touches and swipes enable us to navigate through Dotti’s various functions.

And let us tell you, the light emitted by each LED is blindingly potent! Not only is it extremely bright, allowing it to maintain its potency even in the brightest of conditions, but each square has the ability to be individually colored – that’s where Dotti’s unique spin to the whole notifications delivery system comes into play!

The minimalist design of Dotti matches its unconventional function, but our single complaint to the design are the pointy corners on its façade. They’re sharp enough to cause more than superficial cuts to the skin if enough pressure is applied.

 

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Dotti Review

Dotti Review
Dotti Review
Dotti Review
Dotti Review
Dotti Review
Introduction


Notifications have become an integral part with our smartphones, providing us with a discrete way of getting quick looks at certain things without being too overly distracting. For the most part, the way we experience notifications hasn’t changed all that much since the first smartphones, but Dotti is aiming to supplement the experience in ways that are exciting, fun, and attentive. What is Dotti you say? Well, it’s this neat-o and simple app-controlled pixel light that offers an intriguing alternative to the traditional way notifications are delivered to us.

Packaging contains:

  • Dotti
  • microUSB cable
  • Quick start guide

Design


In all fairness, there’s nothing ornate about Dotti’s design – it’s just a simple square-shaped plastic thing; nothing more. From the front, it looks like a cube, but the rear flaunts a hard angled design that gives Dotti a little bit more geometry. Luckily, it’s lightweight and constructed from highly durable plastic that seems to do a great job of cushioning falls. Looking around Dotti, there are very few things fashioned onto it. Specifically, the only two notable things are the microUSB port in the rear to charge Dotti, and just a pinhole sized master reset button on its underside – and that’s all!

While the premise of Dotti is direct, much like its design, there’s actually a lot of tech involved with how it operates. Peeking closely to the front surface of Dotti, there are exactly 64 square shaped boxes that hide away LEDs, which are soundly protected by a thick clear piece of plastic. Now, the 64 squares allow Dotti to produce some interesting patterns and animations with the help of those LEDs behind each one of them. On top of that, the top surface of Dotti is touch sensitive – so various touches and swipes enable us to navigate through Dotti’s various functions.

And let us tell you, the light emitted by each LED is blindingly potent! Not only is it extremely bright, allowing it to maintain its potency even in the brightest of conditions, but each square has the ability to be individually colored – that’s where Dotti’s unique spin to the whole notifications delivery system comes into play!

The minimalist design of Dotti matches its unconventional function, but our single complaint to the design are the pointy corners on its façade. They’re sharp enough to cause more than superficial cuts to the skin if enough pressure is applied.



Dotti app


Dotti is compatible with Android and iOS devices using the companion Dotti app, which is free to download. This, essentially, is what allows Dotti to complement the way we experience notifications. Not only can we select any of the hundreds of designs that are available through the app, but we can make our own as well by utilizing the grid presented to us. In real time, we can see our creation on the app come alive through Dotti and how its LEDs light up. The app also provides us with some useful access to Dotti’s numerous modes, which we’ll detail later on.

Connectivity


Pairing it with an iPhone 6 Plus via its Bluetooth 4.1 LE connection, Dotti offers a range of approximately 30 to 40 feet in our experience using it indoors. That’s not bad considering that Dotti is meant to be stationary; most likely reserved for home or office use. However, our complaint is related to how Dotti seems to automatically shut off after periods of inactive connectivity. It’s an annoyance because we have to constantly have to turn on Dotti and run the app for it to sync whenever we leave to do some errand and come back.

Performance


Dotti Review
As we mentioned, the LED lights are undoubtedly bright and potent, ensuring that a notification is never missed when Dotti’s within sight. Dismissing notifications on Dotti is done by either physically swiping right on Dotti’s touch sensitive surface, or by just looking at the notification on our device – that’s it! Indeed, it offers a different approach to how notifications are delivered to us, but we wish there was some sort of way to dim Dotti because the bright lighting is rather irritating at night when we’re trying to sleep.

Beyond being a notification delivery system, Dotti offers several other secondary functions that help to widen its usefulness. For one, it can be used as an ordinary digital clock. Secondly, Dotti’s music mode enables it to act as a visualizer companion that dances to music. Next up, there’s an animation mode that cycles through preloaded or customized content. And finally, it doubles as a dice too when it’s placed into “game” mode.

All told, we appreciate that there’s a high degree of personalization to Dotti – not only from a notifications aspect, but how it also favors that 8-bit pixel design style with its patterns and animations. It’s definitely cool and dishes up an unconventional way notifications are visualized!

Battery


In the week we’ve been using Dotti as a notifications tool, it has yet to deplete its battery entirely. That’s good news, seeing that it’s not the kind of thing that’ll require frequent charges. To be fair, though, we have to clarify that we’ve been mainly using it as a notifications tool – so it’s not constantly lit up using the other modes. If you decide on using the other modes that require continuous lighting, it’s rated to provide over 5+ hours of juice. Alternatively, it’s rated for 720+ hours in notifications mode.

Conclusion


Dotti Review
Without question, Dotti is one of those curious gadgets most of us might overlook in a store filled with other tech. After spending some time with it, though, it’s a cool alternative to how notifications are handled – more so when most of us haven’t really been exposed to anything else like it before. It’s also sweet that it does more than just handle notifications, which is an added treat of course. And we can’t neglect to mention its retro-like style with its 8-bit pixel patterns and animations!

Then again, we have to remind ourselves about its $79.99 sticker price, which is a pretty steep investment for a gadget that does what it does. Dazzling, that’s the perfect word that sums up Dotti, but its high cost makes it one tough impulse buy. Instead, you’ll need to ask yourself if $80 is really worth it considering that notifications are already handled by the devices you already have.


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