Narrative Clip 2: Progress (sort of)

So after the initial disappointment about the Narrative Clip 2's performance and some back and forth with Narrative customer support, there's some progress to report.

The promised firmware upgrade (0.17 - I haven't had a chance to evaluate the 1.0.0 firmware yet) arrived and brought some improvement regarding battery life. With the new firmware, I'm getting just under 7.5 hours of continuous use and something like 8.5 hours of light use, where the Clip stays in a dark place most of the time. That's an improvement, but still not great and still far away from what I'm used to getting out of the original Narrative Clip (which, btw, has a less powerful battery).

I was also given an alpha version of the new uploader which now recognises the Clip 2 and lets me upload photos via the computer. One or two updates later, it also got the option to keep local copies of the photos back. It won't let me change the path yet, but at least it's there. And I already needed it, since I have a suspicion that the web app is sometimes hiding perfectly good photos from me.

Let me make one thing clear: The Narrative Clip 2 is not a bad product. It has some nice new features and a vastly improved image quality. The problems that it has are technical and can be addressed by software updates or, in the worst case, hardware replacements (I'm on my third Clip 1, actually).

What really irritates me about this whole thing is that apparently someone at Narrative decided that it would be a good idea to ship the Clip 2 in this state. They are understandably proud of the features that they've managed to pack into this tiny little enclosure and were probably eager to show them to the world. But someone somewhere seems to have lost focus and has overlooked that this product is not ready yet for the intended purpose, i.e. lifelogging.

As an example, I took a trip to Paris recently. This includes a 4 hour train ride, during which not much is happening, so I left the Clip 2 in my pocket. Add the time it takes me to get to the station and from the station in Paris to my hotel, and I'll end up with a clip's battery that's almost empty. So before I can go about exploring the city, I have to make sure that the battery of the Clip 2 is fully charged again. And this is my life with the Clip 2 all the time now: When I leave the house, I have to consider how long it'll take until I'll be able to charge it again. And of course I can't use it during that charging time. I have to plan my life around this little gadget, when it was really meant to be an innocuous companion of my daily routines and experiences. Someone at Narrative clearly dropped the ball on this one.

I'm sure the engineers at Narrative will get this right eventually. It's just that I'm wary that the company seems to have lost its way and forgotten what they were about originally - logging your life, effortlessly and without giving it much thought.

Creative Commons Licence "Narrative Clip 2: Progress (sort of)" by Dirk Haun is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International Licence.


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Narrative Clip 2: Reliability Issues in the System - Dirks Hirnableiter
[...] Sonntag, 10. April 2016, 09:45 Uhr Narrative is making progress with the battery issues I complained about in previous posts. With the 1.0.0 and 1.2.0 firmware versions, it's now possible to leave your Narrative Clip 2 unplugged from a power [...] [mehr]
Empfangen am Sonntag, 10. April 2016, 09:46 Uhr

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