With its short and snappy name, the Flic is a button. When I first saw the packaging containing my review sample, I though that it featured a claim that the Flic was the word’s smallest button and my initial response was “Surely not!”. A second glance, after rubbing the sleep from my eyes, revealed that the claim was actual that the device was the “World’s Smartest Button” which was more intriguing and possibly more believable. So just what is the Flic and how does it qualify for the claim of smartness which has more to do with its capability rather than the actual appearance of the device.
Not surprisingly the Flic button is circular in shape and it can be attached to an appropriate surface. Fortunately with this button you do not need to put your needlework skills to the test. This button does not possess holes for inserting a thread to hold the button in place. Instead you need to use the sticky pad affixed to the base of the device when attaching the button to an appropriate surface such as a wall, appliance, car or even an article of clothing.
In order for the Flic to perform whatever duty has been assigned to it, you first need to download the Flic app from the App Store or Google Play. This is the type of app that wants to sample all the items on the menu for permissions. The Flic wants to be granted access to devices & app history, identity, calendar, contacts, location, SMS, phone and photos/media/files features but does manage to ignore the kitchen sink. When using the Flic app in conjunction with the Flic button, you need to create an account by submitting an email address, first name and password.
In a similar way as the Flic has a simple circular shape, the initial setting up of a link between the Flic partnership of app and button is simple. You simply need to press the plus sign displayed by the app and then press the actual Flic button which derives its power from an internal battery. Once the connection has been established, taking but a few seconds, you can give the Flic button an appropriate name. This is especially important if you are planning to use several Flic buttons as a means of distinguishing between individual units as they are added to the app.
After introducing your Flic button or buttons to the app, you can then move on to the Task section of the app. As downloaded, the app comes with over a hundred possible tasks from which you can select the one that the Flic button can handle. These tasks have been categorised as phone controls, lifestyle, communications, music, home automation, fun and tools. Each of the various categories is made up of up to 25 different tasks from which you can make the appropriate selection for attaching to individual Flic buttons. You are almost spoilt for choice with the selection of tasks available for your use.
Of course, Shortcut Labs, the company behind the Flic concept, would prefer you to invest in multiple Flic units as you organise your remote activity with Flics providing the means to activate dedicated tasks. The assorted Flic buttons can be scattered around the home and other possessions such as a car and items that are your constant companions.
Setting up the selected task for a Flic button can be a little more complicated that the initial set-up procedure. It could involve the entry of password details relating to any third-party accounts that might form part of the assigned task to a particular Flic, A scrollable Settings section can be used to set parameters including what happens when a single or double click is applied to a relevant Flic button.
Prices for Flic Smart Buttons, some of which feature appropriate symbols embossed on the front, vary between £19.99 and £29.99 for individual units with packs of Flic buttons also being available. The Flic concept might not be to everybody’s but it could prove useful for those wanting to organise regular actions that can be automated with the press of a button.
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