Very often we come across a situation when we need to answer or to make an important call but there is no way we can do this, mainly, because of several reasons: first of all, we don't want to bother people nearby, second of all, we don't want them to tap our conversation. Now there is a solution how to avoid such inconveniences: Hushme - personal acoustic device that will help you to protect speech privacy in open space environments.
Apart from the normal headset mode, Hushme has two more modes: passive and active.
In the normal headset mode, Hushme connects to the smartphone via Bluetooth and you can use it as hands-free headset while speaking on the phone or listening to music.
In the passive voice muffling mode, Hushme is locked over the mouth using magnetic coupling. This mode is provided by the innovative insulation materials, that are embedded inside the mask, by the extra soft cushion muffs and by the special sound-absorbing paint, that covers the whole inner surface of the device. So, people at the distance of 3 feet cannot decipher your words, while your speech is transmitted to the other end undistorted thanks to sensitive built-in microphone.
The cushion muffs are replaceable, so you can remove it in order to clean or to replace with new muffs.
The size-adjusting system allows to set up the right size of the mask so it could fit any face.
The active voice masking mode is provided by the electronics, which is located in the headband, and by the proprietary algorithms. Pressing the button activates the outer speakers, that are located on the perimeter of the mask, - these speakers will generate masking sounds.
According to the research by American Speech-Language-Hearing Associacion, the volume of a normal speech is 50-60 dB. Thanks to the insulating properties of its body, Hushme in passive mode is capable to lower some to 25 dB. Thus, the volume of the resulting sound using the mask will be approximately 25-30 dB, which corresponds to a whisper or noise level in a quiet library.
Still one can decipher a whisper too if one wants to eavesdrop on you. In this case, we recommend using the active voice masking mode.
In the active voice masking mode, 4 speakers located on the outer surface of the device are activated, and the mask starts to produce a preset sound. A special algorithm modulates this sound relative to the intensity of your voice: the mask "is silent" when you are silent, it raises or lowers the volume or pauses completely following your voice. This masking sound adds approximately 12 dB. Thus, the resulting noise when using the active mode will be approximately 35-40 dB, which corresponds to the noise level in a quiet room.
Finally, for maximum efficiency of the device, we recommend to lower the voice when you speak over the phone using Hushme, then you will ultimately protect your speech privacy and still will be heard perfectly well on the other end.
Hushme uses dedicated App to synchronize with your smart phone, which enables you to choose masking sounds from the library, upload your customized sounds, adjust volume, etc.
The sounds of rain, wind and ocean are downloaded into the device by default.
The volume and the intensity of the masking sounds directly depends on the pace, rhythm and volume of your speech.
But, in any case, the output noise is lower in volume than the incoming speech.
The device can also be used as a powerful wireless speaker that allows you to enjoy the music.
A detailed sketch
3D printed prototype
Working prototype with electronics
People on the move
Bloggers & Writers
From left to right:
Yaroslav Romashko / Commercial manager
Alex Nesterenko / R&D manager
/ Production manager
/ Financial manager
/ Operating manager
Back in 2015, three friends: CEO, CFO and CIO of a leading Ukrainian food company, were sitting in a café downtown Kiev and came across the problem of speech privacy protection. A lady next to them was trying to speak via Skype with a business partner of hers but at some point she ceased it as she realized that people around unintentionally overheard her conversation.
This is how they came up with the idea of a personal acoustic device protecting speech privacy when speaking over the phone.
Later on, in early 2016, the three friends met the core team of ARTKB - a renowned Ukrainian hardware development bureau, which helped to produce and deliver to backers such successful products as iblazr 1, iblazr 2, eCozy, Hideez (Safeband).
Together they founded Hushme Inc. and started working on the world’s first voice mask aka Hushme.
The company is registered in Dover, DE and the main office is based there, but R&D will remain in Ukraine.
Hushme prototype in the form factor of a wireless round-the-neck headset was first presented at CES 2017 and stirred a lot of interest among market professionals and general public.
The main goal of our device - is to cover human needs connected with phone call privacy. We are confident, that many people will appreciate this. Which is why, we believe that the launch of this Kickstarter campaign will help us to find even more like-minded people, who would consider Hushme to be beneficial and state-of-the-art gadget.
We`ve already managed to develop a working prototype with electronics, currently we are hard at work upon implementation of additional improvements and we really need your support.
Your funds will help us to:
Finalize product shape
Finish apps for iOS and Android
Order injection mold tooling
Organize a mass production
Deliver Hushme to you
We would like to thank all of you for your feedback and support.
It inspires and gives us confidence that we are headed in the right direction!
Special thanks to:
ARTKB - for the professional approach to the hardware development
When developing the product, Hushme team expects absolutely the same risks as any other hardware start-up after Kickstarter. Nevertheless our project has strengths that we plan to fully utilize to circumvent all risks and deliver the product to the backers on time:
1. Development process is nearing completion as we already have working electronics, a working voice masking algorithm, and we have created more than a dozen prototypes that were tested on different people and in different situations. We have very little left – to fine tune the mechanics and to conduct final tests, finalize the design and prepare our device for production.
2. We have a very strong team: Alexander, Vladimir and Yaroslav are the founders of a well-known Ukrainian hardware development company ARTKB, which has a huge experience in the new product development. Roman, Konstantin and Andrey have been running a big food company for many years, they have vast experience in business development and project management. Thus, each of us clearly understands what needs to be done so that the backers receive their product on time.