Headphones are a staple in the fitness and urban world, and something most cannot do without. Makes sense why the wearable tech market would shift to include those who may not have an interest in other wearables, like fitness trackers. Hearables is a term introduced by Apple and is a combination of wearable and smart headphone, classified as a subset of wearables.
You can expect these hi-tech headphones to have similar functionality to fitness trackers, with a range of sensor options. We’ve heard hearables could potentially monitor sleep, step count, distance, concentration levels, calories burned, all with excellent sound quality and the ability to cancel noise around you. While there are still many unknowns, in the next few months more details should be rolling out.
A growing number of hearable startups are banking on this shift. Fitness coaches and others in the fitness industry will likely drive the early adoption of the hearable revolution. With hearables, there is the ability for multi-functioning and act as a hybrid device, such as listening to music with premium earbuds, but also tracking your fitness, the use case for consumers goes further.
While most hearables will have a universal fit, United Sciences is a 3D scanning company aiming to make hearables a better fit. They think through mastering the scanning process inside the ear, that they can create a custom fit that works for anyone. Yet, the ability to do this is more complicated than not. The human ear is difficult to scan, as the area is dark and small, the added ear wax and oils are just another layer.
Fortunately, United Sciences was able to nail this process, through developing a handheld mobile device scanner that digitizes the process and scans each ear for one minute. They want to take this technology to the masses by putting the scanners in retail stores. They envision you could walk into a Verizon, AT&T or Apple Store and get your ears scanned for a custom fit.
While FitBit, Jawbone, and Garmin are focusing on the wrist, here are some potential hearables to keep an eye out for:
● eFit, United Sciences brand
● Samsung’s Gear IconX
● Bose SoundSport
● Bragi Dash
● Revamp of Apple EarPods
● Jabra Sport Pulse
● Moto Hint
● Here Active Listening
● Misfit (Fossil-owned)