With the recent shift to working from home, setting up a comfortable workstation has never been more sought after. Topics in my WhatsApp chat groups have gone from lipstick colours, to what “adjustable height” desk to buy. And perhaps the most important piece of furniture to get for your computer desk, is a good chair.
I was offered a review of OSIM’s new launch, the uThrone — what the brand claims to be the world’s first gaming massage chair. And if anyone can do it, these guys can. When I think of OSIM, massage chairs and those massage things that you put your feet in at the airport come to mind. And years ago, I saved up to buy my very own OSIM uDiva; it’s an armchair with roller massage technology and an in-built foot and leg massager. I love it. It’s gotten more action over the circuit breaker and it’s one of those furniture pieces that I’ll keep forever (as long as it’s working).
The uThrone is in the special class of gaming chairs that can double up as work chairs as well; it has the familiar design and build of popular gaming chairs — think Secretlab (these guys are ace at their marketing), and the newly announced Razer Iskur Gaming Chair. But what makes the uThrone unique from everyone else is that it’s a massage chair as well. And that’s the whole purpose of this review; to see if those massage functions are all they are made out to be.
This is what the uThrone in Orange looks like:
It’s sporty. Like a fast car. There’s a blue and all-black “Predator” edition as well, and with regard to the chair’s colour, I personally like the black one best.
The chair has a handlebar on its side that allows you to recline it up to a 145-degree angle. It looks like this:
The armrests can be fully adjusted up or down, forward or backward, and the right one cleverly conceals the control panel for the massage functions. It’s hidden under the sliding armrest, which also means you’ll never misplace it, always know where it is, and there are no cumbersome cables to deal with.
Because I was impatient and really wanted to try the chair, I didn’t read the instruction manual and decided to figure out the buttons myself. And they were really easy to get the hang of; just start with the top right button, which measures your “Shoulder Position”, then select any of the three “Auto Programs”. And if you want to spend more time and focus on an area, there are “Up” and “Down” arrow buttons to manual move the massage rollers; and for the style of massage, a “Press-Grip” button for kneading, and a “Rolling & Tapping” button for pounding. Again, really easy to figure out. Here’s a closer look at the panel.
OSIM has employed their famous V-Hand massage technology into the uThrone; these are roller balls that move along the body contours, and simulate the hand-grip of a professional masseur. With the kneading action, it’s a deep and firm massage that feels realistic. And with the control buttons, I found it easy to target specific sore areas like my lower back and shoulders, and to get the “hands” to stay on those areas longer.
Yes it was a good massage. I dare say even better than the uDiva I own (but let’s be fair, that one’s already 5 years old). With conventional massage chairs, I won’t sit and work in them — they really serve just one purpose; which also means I will only visit the massage chair when I want to use its massage functions. With the uThrone, it solves that issue of inactivity with massage chairs, because you won’t forget to use this one as you’re sitting on it all the time. I doubt this will be a chair that anyone will regret buying; as long as you need a gaming or work chair, you’ll get immense mileage out of the uThrone, and subsequently its massage functions.
The chair’s finish is a PVC leatherette that’s certified by BOKEN — a third party testing organisation in Japan. It looks easy to clean and didn’t appear to heat up after hours of sitting on it.
The uThrone also comes with a memory foam headrest and lumbar cushion for added support if you need it. I didn’t get much use out of the lumbar cushion because I was busy using the massage functions over and over again.
There’s also a bonus feature: two bluetooth speakers built into the headrest. The idea is to provide immersive surround sound when you’re gaming. It works well if you don’t already have a pair of gaming headphones glued to your head.
One thing to note about the uThrone is that it’s quite a big chair — meaning it needs space. I would suggest checking out its measurements first to see if it’ll fit into your home. But other than that, if you’re in the market for a computer chair to work and play games on, you need to check out OSIM’s uThrone — the massage functions are a game changer, and once you test it out for yourself, you won’t settle for anything less.
The OSIM uThrone is currently available for pre-order both ONLINE and across all OSIM stores, retailing at $899. Deliveries for pre-order will begin from mid-February 2021 for the orange, early march 2021 for the black, and end march 2021 for the blue.