Nolii launches line of smartphone accessories to tackle an industry "rife with over-design"
VDF products fair: London brand Nolii has launched a collection of minimal smartphone accessories designed to simplify everyday tasks, from chargers with tangle-free cables to modular phone cases.
For the range, Nolii created a modular family of technology and smartphone accessories, including a modular phone case featuring a "click lock" that can host different add-on elements like a battery pack, a fitness band or a card wallet.
According to Nolii's design director Daniel Barnes, the brand's products are designed to be customised based on people's lifestyle needs as well as their aesthetic.
"Nolii is a brand that takes a systematic approach to product design," Barnes told Dezeen. "Our design process is rooted in observation and insight into our real lives and how we interact with technology so that we solve everyday frustrations as one inter-connected problem."
"We call this approach 'human-first', and we believe it is this that sets us apart [from other tech brands]," he added.
Following its initial concept launch in 2017, Nolii has now introduced its first official range, which includes the Couple Case, Couple Fitness Band, Couple Battery systems, Loop cable and Duo Plug.
Each of the products has a clean, minimal design – an aesthetic Nolii deliberately opted for in order to solve what it saw as a problem of many other tech brands.
"Good design is knowing what to remove, and not just what to add," Barnes told Dezeen. "The category and segment that Nolii is tackling is rife with over-design, feature creep and complexity."
"It feels overwhelmingly designed for the tech-savvy, jargon-based, male market," he continued. "But in reality, the pain points and problems that we identified were pervasive across a much wider audience."
"We wanted to provide a fresh, new alternative to this, balancing functionality with human-first design to create simple, intuitive products as a result. Establishing this was really the tip of the iceberg."
Each of the products was built around the Nolii Click Lock Couple Case system, which comprises a silicone smartphone case with a square-shaped cut out on the back that additional functions can be attached to.
For example, users can add the Wallet, Fitness Band or Battery to the case by lining up the square-shaped nodule featured on each product with the case cut-out, clicking it in and twisting it to secure it in place.
"The modular system allows users to build their own personalised eco-system of accessories over-time," explained Barnes.
"The Click Lock is designed to support a more conscious consumption of technology, by enabling backward and forward compatibility. So even if your phone changes and therefore your case, your accessories remain fully-integrated and relevant for longer."
The Wallet attachment enables users to secure their credit or debit cards to their smartphone case, ridding of the need to scramble through your bag when you need them.
Users can also attach their phone to a Fitness Band using the Click Lock system, allowing them to take their phone out on a run or workout without needing to remove its case or insert it into a protective pocket.
The add-on battery elements – Battery Wireless and Battery Lightning Cable – act as chargers on-the-go that are lightweight and detachable.
Nolii has also released a series of tangle-free cables called Loop, which have a fabric outer shell that make it easier to coil up.
Each cable also features a hoop-shaped section towards its end, made from silicone, that can be clipped onto an accompanying base.
"Most of us have that infamous bag, drawer or even desk space full of tangled cables, wires and batteries that we rely upon to keep us going through our busy day. Nolii has tried to re-imagine our lives without this - no mess, no fuss."
"Cables are always frustratingly under our desk somewhere. The Loop cable has an integrated 'loop' feature that sits on its dock, ready for when you need it and where you expect it."
While this is Nolii's first collection of products, the brand released its first singular product back in 2018 – the Rise lamp, which doubles up as a phone charger and an alarm clock.
Ben Parker and Paul Austin from design studio Made Thought have taken over as creative directors of Nolii from Benjamin Hubert, who held the role from 2017 to 2019.
Product: Couple Case, Couple Fitness Band, Couple Battery systems, Loop cable and Duo Plug.
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