About this project
Our Kickstarter campaign is over, however it’s not too late to pre-order the Wearhaus Arc!
Just because you visited our Kickstarter page, we want to give you $20 off your order. At checkout, enter the code KICKSTARTER to retrieve the discount. This deal will expire January 10, 2015.
Let’s stay in touch! Here are links to our social media outlets. Share this awesome product and deal with your friends!
For product updates and exclusive band interviews, check out our blog. We post weekly band interviews
Music is a social experience -- much more so than your headphones currently allow for. It's a way to express your individual taste and a key part of your own style and personality.
The Wearhaus Arc is a reimagining of this classic piece of hardware; with all the changes in how we share and listen to music, it's about time headphones evolved to keep up.
As music lovers ourselves, we know that music is one of the most powerful ways to connect with someone - whether they’re an old friend or a new acquaintance. We never liked the way that headphones automatically close you off from everyone around you (although in many cases, that’s useful!), so we built Arc to be the first pair of headphones that let you wirelessly sync up with multiple friends and listen together.
To accomplish this, we designed a mesh networking protocol on top of standard Bluetooth audio profiles, allowing Arc to relay music wirelessly between multiple units and listen in sync. Now you can easily introduce your friends to the artists you love most, or discover new music through people around you.
The Wearhaus App makes sharing music with your friends easy. It works in tandem with Arc, displaying a feed of stations nearby and controlling privacy settings as well as headphone color. Check out a quick demonstration below!
We’ve tested broadcasting with up to six other people at a time, with a range of 100 feet outdoors and 65 feet indoors. Though theoretically Arc can support unlimited listeners, we're constantly working to test and increase the maximum range and number of connections, and will push firmware improvements to these even after we ship the product.
Just like your musical taste, the headphones you wear say a lot about who you are - for some people, it’s even more of a fashion statement. A key part of the Arc design and experience are the customizable LED light rings. You’re able to choose your personal color at any time using the mobile app or the touch controls. If you’re broadcasting, anyone who joins your station syncs up to your color! Of course, you can also dim or turn off the backlight entirely if you prefer to be more low key.
In our countless hours of user research, we noticed a pattern among almost every brand we tested; the simple act of changing volume or song required whipping out your phone or fumbling with buttons. That seemed like a terribly unnatural way to control your music, so we made sure to tackle that problem too while designing the Arc.
A touch-sensitive panel on the right earcup allows you to control playback with simple, intuitive gestures. You can play/pause your music with a single tap, swipe to move between songs and change volume, or control sharing functionality, all without having to touch your phone.
No matter what else they can do, we went into this process knowing that the Arc will need to look, sound, and feel great to make a user happy. So we spent months working with our factory to optimize all the essentials.
Arc's battery lasts for 16 continuous hours of solo listening, or 10 hours of sharing. A micro-USB charging cable is included, along with a standard 3.5mm audio cable for those who prefer wired audio. Voice calls and in-game chat are supported by a high-quality digital mic embedded in the earcup, right next to your jaw.
Every part of the Arc has undergone rigorous stress and reliability testing, including careful tuning of headband pressure (no more sore ears!) and a super comfortable, form-fitting cushion design that seals out external noise.
40mm 32Ω dual-diaphragm drivers provide a delicate balance between the lows, mids, and highs, making sure no part of your music is overstated or drowned out. We've spent the last few months obsessively tuning Arc's acoustic design, and will continue to do so until production - we want you to give you the best audio quality possible!
The Wearhaus mobile app helps you see what people around you are listening to and instantly tune in. The main screen shows all nearby users’ stations, along with their current song and connected listeners. Selecting immediately adds you to the station, and you’ll start hearing exactly what everyone else is listening to. The station page lets you chat with the other listeners, upvote the channel owner and bookmark the song for later.
A smartphone isn’t required to use the Arc, but our mobile app significantly enhances the social experience that the headphones create.
Our manufacturing partner, based out of Shenzhen and with 20+ years of high-end headphone experience, got involved in our design very early on; we’ve been working with them since January 2014, began design for manufacture (DFM) in April, and are on track to ship in early January 2015!
We opened up website for pre-orders in May, when we had the first presentable prototype ready. That helped us cover the design-for-manufacture costs and bring us to a production-ready state. Now we’re at a very exciting point on this journey, where we can begin shipping our headphones in January! We started this campaign to raise the funds that will hopefully get us all the way through our production run, and get the Arc off the assembly line and delivered to your eager ears.
More importantly, we want to grow the community of passionate music listeners in the Wearhaus Arc community. The headphones are fantastic for listening to music with your close friends, and the more users, the more exciting the Wearhaus Arc becomes. We’d love your support and hope you will become a backer.
THANKS EVERYONE! We reached our $200K goal. More LED features for all!
[Previous post - WOW! We passed our $150K stretch goal and now each and every Arc will receive active noise cancelling through a firmware update after launch. Thank you so much for sharing and helping us reach this amazing goal!
We promised something colorful and here it is. If we hit $200K, we will make your Arc LED lights extra special by adding pulsing patterns, multicolor options and access to any color in the RGB spectrum.]
[Previous post - We hit our goal in the first 4 days of our campaign! We're super excited to see so many people interested in the Wearhaus Arc. As a reward to all of our early supporters, we'll be introducing some stretch goals that make the Arc even cooler!
Since so many people have requested active noise canceling, we decided that we'll include it as a stretch goal for our campaign! If we are able to raise at least $150,000 before the end of the campaign, we'll add active noise canceling to the Wearhaus Arc! This won't be available immediately when we ship in January, but will be enabled through a firmware update using the Wearhaus app a few months afterwards.]
We went to Treasure Island Music Festival in October, 2014 to get feedback from music lovers around the Bay Area - take a look at what they thought!
"They're very comfortable, even after extended wearing. Mentally, I thought the lack of a well/cup where the driver sits would feel weird, it doesn't. Overall I like how they look and feel...” - Engadget
"I have seen and worn an early prototype of these and they’re surprisingly comfortable and quite cool...As for sound quality the team has been careful to make these things well-balanced and future upgrades should allow for finer audio controls." - Techcrunch
"Headphones by their very nature are for a more solitary experience. You pop on a pair and it’s just you and your beats. But with social media elements creeping into every aspect of our lives, it was only a matter of time before headphones were designed for sharing." - Discovery Channel
"These are arguably some of the most socially-connected headphones in the world. Not only do they wirelessly connect to a smartphone but also to each other." - Huffington Post
"Saying that music is also a social experience, they are designing the Wearhaus Arc, wireless headsets that can both let you enjoy your tunes by yourself or, if you're feeling charitable, share it with others around you. And it's also designed to look fancy as well, with customizable LED lights." - Slashgear
We first thought of the idea after hearing about silent raves, which were already popular in Europe and on their way to the US. Initially it just seemed like a cool experience, but then a friend pointed out it would be great to have similar functionality in headphones, but for everyday use. Nelson hacked together the first prototypes in Shanghai and tried them on people to see what they thought. We got enthusiastic responses so we kept developing from there.
Our goal is to bring back the feeling of connecting with someone over appreciating a song or album together, to make that a natural part of the listening experience once again. It used to be that people had a very visceral, physical connection to their music - you'd buy a record, sit down with friends, and take in each song as it played, or put together mixtapes for that special someone. The social aspect of music disappeared after mp3s came about, and nowadays shooting someone a URL is the norm for sharing music - but it's just not the same, and really kind of boring.
Risks and challenges
MANUFACTURING: The Arc is close to production-ready and on track to ship by early 2015, so we have moved past many of the risks that early hardware projects might encounter. Our manufacturing partner has built headphones for premium brands for over 20 years, and both their engineers and our team have endlessly tested and tweaked every aspect of the Arc to give you the perfect set of headphones.
We’re entering the first stages of our tooling process, and have budgeted enough time for the standard three iterations. Throughout the process we’ll be putting our sample units through intensive test processes (sound quality, durability, impact, humidity, temperature, wireless interference, and many more). If we notice any issues, our priority will be to spend a little bit of extra time to resolve the issue and deliver the best quality product possible. Of course, we’ll be upfront with all of our backers about any delays.
SHIPPING/FULFILLMENT: We lined up partnerships with many experienced shipping and fulfillment companies to ensure that our product is able to be shipped worldwide to all of our backers. We’ve done our due diligence to ensure that the shipping methods fit with our product pricing structure and have accounted for additional fees like import duties and VAT.
While we’ve done our best to mitigate the risk, some things are out of our control, such as weather issues, equipment malfunctions, and shipping accidents. These may delay the final shipment of the product, but we’ll make sure to clearly communicate with our backers if any of these issues arise.
FUNCTIONALITY: We have ambitious long term goals for our product and have many different features in the pipeline that we’ll be able to add as our community grows. As with any new product, there may be certain features that our users want that might not be in our app or our headphones when we first ship the product.
For example, our goal is to eventually have our headphones share with over 30 other people, but we may not support that many when we first ship. There are also many different patterns of lighting patterns that we can use for the headphones, but we still need some more user feedback to see what people want. Rest assured that we will be constantly listening to our users and improving our app/headphones with firmware and software updates.
CERTIFICATION: Arc is also currently undergoing FCC and Bluetooth compliance testing in parallel with safety certification for various countries, e.g. IC, CE, UL.
Special thanks to Kicking it Forward! http://kickingitforward.orgLearn about accountability on Kickstarter
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