If you’re building a futuristic hearable, the trend right now is to tease what it can do with a heavy serving of hype. See Waverly Labs and Pilot, for starters, last week. Now Human Inc., a self proclaimed “secretive venture” which raised $5 million in investment earlier this year, is teasing its first product – the Sound program.
It’s a pair of on-ear, completely wireless headphones that – considering the company’s name – make the model look like a beautiful alien. The design is inspired by the human ear and means there’s more space to squeeze components into compared to all the in-ear buds we’re seeing. The Seattle-based Human Inc., which includes ex-Microsoft engineers on staff, describes its tech as “personal surround sound.”
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The promised features make Sound seem like a mash up of Doppler Labs’ Here Active Listening earbuds, the language translating Pilot and erm, some cheap speakers. The website hints at “tune in/fade out” controls to amplify the volume of your surroundings and minimise ambient noise around you, though we don’t yet know the level of controls available.
More than one Sound program device will be able to connect to one audio device, which again makes us think sci-fi, and touch commands will allow the wearer to take a call, adjust volume and skip music tracks. The translation stuff is very vaguely hinted at: “One feature, to be disclosed this summer, will aim to break language barriers.”
As if that wasn’t enough, it will also transform into a portable speaker which Human Inc. says is better than a smartphone speaker. That is setting the bar quite low but if you’re comfortable enough wearing this design out and about, it could be a bonus extra.
The announcement is a “first look” and as such we have no release date, final features list or price to go on. We’ll keep you updated as we get more info.