Nolii detangles the experience of tech accessories

‘These products are like the Lego – they’re beautifully designed’

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Up until a few years ago, tech accessories were limited the extra wires and plugs located in the depths of your new phone’s packaging, destined to be slung in a drawer and slowly distributed amongst bags and pockets in an ever-growing tangle. Nolii is a new firm that wants to banish the disposable nature of these irritating essentials, building an eco-system of things that might outlast your actual device, using warm colours, simple design and a playful, practical modularity.

Nolii was founded in the UK in 2017 by Asad Hamir and Amar Radia, two self-confessed tech addicts who parlayed their interest into successful entrepreneurship. ‘I’m a power user,’ Hamir confesses, showing us an image of the digital spaghetti that once crowded the bottom of his travel bag. He knew there had to be a better way. ‘You’d get devices that were beautiful but had no function, or very feature-driven devices,’ he says, ‘the whole experience just needed looking into.’ Nolii’s debut suite of projects was designed by Benjamin Hubert at LAYER and revealed back in 2017. A complementary set of cases, cables, plugs and battery blocks, with a common design language and a clever connection system, it’s taken the duo three years to turn concepts into workable, production ready designs. ‘It was about getting a perfect balance of practicality and function,’ says Hamir, ‘we’re all about feedback, listening and refinement.’

Building a business is distinctly different from promoting a suite of concepts, and Hamir and Radia have had to raise capital as well as source, approve and develop a supply chain. They’ve also teamed up with another set of leading creatives, Made Thought, to help shape the business’s look and feel. Paul Austin, together with Made Thought co-founder Ben Parker, has overseen the branding and implementation of Nolii. ‘It was a refreshing opportunity to combine colour, functionality and geometry,’ says Austin, ‘these products are like the Lego – they’re beautifully designed.’ Made Thought are also investors, parlaying their experience in building brands into the commercial realm.

Nolii’s debut products include the Couple range, a collection of iPhone accessories that incorporate the company’s Click Lock, a twisting mechanism that allows you clip in the card-carrying ‘Wallet’, or attach the phone to Nolii’s own Fitness Band. There’s also wireless battery charging, as well as the Loop cable with a built-in tie and the Duo plug.

One thing that’s integral to the Nolii approach is a sense of accountability over suppliers, quality, responsible materials. ‘It’s the first time we’ve taken equity in a brand we’ve helped grow,’ Austin admits, ‘it gives you a changed perspective. We’re encouraging people to use less,’ he adds, ‘we are investing highly in the quality of these products.’ Hamir also stresses the emphasis on user-friendliness. ‘There’s a space for an agile brand that really engages with people,’ he says. Nolii makes a big deal out of seemingly small things.

Go Case Wallet

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Go Duo Plug

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Go Loop On Base

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Go Fitness Band

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Go Wallet

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Jonathan Bell has written for Wallpaper* magazine since 1999, covering everything from architecture and transport design to books, tech and graphic design. He is now the magazine’s Transport and Technology Editor. Jonathan has written and edited 15 books, including Concept Car Design, 21st Century House, and The New Modern House. He is also the host of Wallpaper’s first podcast.