Wearables have proliferated so much in global markets, that we’re now used to them. It is not an uncommon sight to see a person sporting a classy Fitbit or a sleek Apple Watch. These devices have grown tremendously, from wristbands and watches to smart clothes and even ‘stick-on wearables.’ But there is a new frontier of wearable technology that is quickly gaining momentum worldwide. Meet the ‘hearables’ – wearable tech meant exclusively for the ears, that are here to transform your audio experience of the world surrounding you. These little gadgets will let you do more than you could possibly imagine. From connecting to your smartphone so you can use multiple apps, to letting you take calls, these hearables want to do it all.
Here One: The improved and more capable version of its predecessor – the Hear Active Listening – the Hear One, is a device that commands your attention. The hearable is capable of real-world sound control, wireless streaming of music and other audio content, lets you take wireless, hands-free calls, filters out sounds you don’t want to hear, amplifies speech when you truly want to tune into something someone is saying, and even lets you remix sounds with add-on effects. What’s more is that this stylish device learns your preferences and adjusts itself according to your personal Listening Profile. Touted as “the first all-in-one, truly wireless listening system,” this wearable is so good that it is no wonder that its parent company Doppler has been praised as “trying to…change the way users hear altogether!”
BitBite: There are numerous devices and apps out there that want you to get healthier, slimmer, fitter and everything in between. But a new device called BitBite is doing all of this very differently. This 3-ounce sensor-packed wearable is part of a whole system that aims to be “your personal coach for healthy eating habits.” Aiming to help you enjoy a healthier lifestyle, the system includes a hearable that records eating sounds, while audio waves of the same are sent to your smartphone. Working with a companion app, BitBite then analyses what, where, when and how you’ve eaten, sends you recommendations based on your own nutritional model, and finally sends real-time feedback to your smartphone. Displaying everything from your bite count to the calories you’ve consumed, BitBite wants to intelligently manage your health right from your ear!
Pilot: Learning new languages is always an exciting experience, but a new hearable called Pilot wants to take that excitement to a whole new level. Aiming to help you learn foreign languages in real time, these earphones enable two people who speak ‘different’ languages to understand each other, and can do so with English, French, Spanish and Italian. Named as the first ‘smart earpiece’ capable of translating between two languages, (or the world’s first language-translating earpiece) Pilot works like the Babel Fish from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy universe. Although these earphones currently translate languages between just two people, technicians from their parent company – Waverly Labs – hope to make a pair which translates everything happening around you in a foreign country. Is that nifty or what!
Samsung Gear IconX: Tech giant Samsung isn’t a stranger to the wearable world. The company has already received praise globally for its smartwatches. But now, Samsung is stepping it up further, with a hearable called the Gear IconX. Boasting a solid storage of 4GB, fitness tracking, and the ability to connect to multiple apps like Endomondo, Runkeeper and Strava, this Android-only wearable is as effective as it is reasonable. At just $199, the Gear IconX even has a case that allows you to charge the smart earbuds while you’re on the move. Further, if the battery runs out on one earbud, you can assign controls to the one with power, and continue listening! Packed with a Voice Guide feature – that provides instant voice feedback on your workout progress, a built-in accelerometer and a heart rate monitor, this hearable is definitely one to pay attention to!
Oticon Opn: If we’re talking about hearables, we cannot possibly miss out on smart hearing aids. Probably the foremost of these is the Oticon Opn. “The world’s first hearing aid that connects to the internet via the If This Then That (IFTTT) network,” this hearable can even “hook up with doorbells and smart lighting systems,” as reported by Fortune. With the Opn, IFTTT provides the means for an internet-connected doorbell to trigger an automated audio message to the wearer. What is even more brilliant about the hearing aid is that it even lets you send a message to a caregiver or family member when its battery is running low, so they can help change it. Finally, while traditional hearing aids isolate one speaker and suppress others, the Opn can give you access to multiple speakers that you want to listen to, and reduce noise simultaneously!
With wearables now letting you control so many aspects of your surroundings from your ears, it is no wonder that the hearable field is growing faster than ever. There are even rumours that Samsung is going to top its Gear IconX with the ‘Samsung Earcle,’ while Microsoft, Apple and Google are all rumoured to be working on their own multi-tasking hearables. All we tech lovers need to do is wait and watch… and ‘keep an ear out’ for these spectacular instances of modern wearable technology.