Admittedly I am a huge nerd. Kevin and I have all the home automation gadgets. Wifi outlets, lights that change color with an app and we both carry conversations with virtual assistants way more than we should admit.
When I got an email from QIUI informing us about the Cell Mate Bluetooth device, I was beyond excited. Full disclosure, in exchange for posting a review we were sent two Cell Mate devices. Kevin is wearing one of them presently and we will be giving the other away to one of you lucky readers. Rest assured that the review will be as unbiased as possible.
The box is very nice. Packed neatly in foam the cage itself, an instruction manual and two base rings are packed neatly inside. It felt like I was unboxing a new phone. It didn’t feel cheap, everything looked rock solid and very high grade. The device ships with the locking pin closed so it needed to be paired to a phone before we could test the installation.
The QIUI App
The name of the app is QIUI and it is available on the Apple and Android stores. The Apple app has a 3.0 rating as of this writing and the Android app has a very weak 1.5 rating. I have an older Samsung phone so my review was using the Android app and I didn’t have any problem with it. I registered our device, unlocked it to allow Kevin to fit himself. We locked and unlocked it a few times just to be certain that it will be able to come off when needed. This is quite a bit of trust to place in the hands of any app, especially an app with a 1.5 star review. While there were good reviews, a couple of the more concerning ones got our attention.
The app has three buttons; friends, toys and me.
- Friends – The person controlling your device can be found here.
- Toys – Your device can be found here.
- Me – This section lists whatever personal data you choose to share.
Setup was easy, turn on Bluetooth, press the button on top of the device and click the next button. Worked right away.
What if it doesn’t open?
When trusting an app to lock valuables of any kind, it is equally as important to be able to access your valuables when you need to access them. There is no emergency unlock so what do you do? The rings are made from a zinc alloy which comparatively looks much better than stainless steel but is slightly less strong according to this article which ranks the two. Kevin said that he has some tools in the garage that could cut through it without damaging the goods. I left the ultimate decision up to Kevin since we were both somewhat leery based on the reviews. For some reason the iPhone crowd seems much more pleased as a whole so perhaps it is device dependent. We’ve been testing this for about two weeks and haven’t experienced any problems locking or unlocking using my Samsung Android phone.
The cage looks somewhat bulky but it lays flat under clothing and doesn’t have the protruding bulge that some cages have beneath clothing. Both ring sizes fit nicely but the gap between the cage was tighter on the smaller cage so we went with the larger of the two. The fit was snug. We explored the inside of the cage with fingers first to check for sharp corners. I always recommend doing this, we’ve found far too many cages with sharp corners or edges. Sharp things can be fun if you are expecting them but unexpected sharpness and edges are not a good thing.
The sample cages that we received from QIUI are both large size and we wish that we had a small to test. Kevin didn’t quite fill the large when soft so we wish that it could have tested. Kevin said that the cage is lightweight and the size appears bulky but isn’t bad under clothing because of the smooth lines. Kevin also commented that the cage does feel quite secure when compared to the many other ball-trap type devices that we’ve tried. If you would like additional information, here is the user manual for the device and app.
It hasn’t been stated yet but it should be said that this is a very expensive cage. At nearly $200, this isn’t a cheap toy but for those of us that love gadgets, this might be fun. Kevin and I see each other daily but this might be especially fun thing to consider for a couple with some miles between them. If you want to give it a try, you can find it for purchase on Amazon.