Elbee: Wireless in-ear headphones with smart features
Elbee: Wireless in-ear headphones with smart features
Enjoy high-quality sound and the possibility to control your smartphone and apps using custom voice commands and head movements.
Enjoy high-quality sound and the possibility to control your smartphone and apps using custom voice commands and head movements. Read more
About this project
You can control your smartphone and apps with the Elbee in any way you like, whether it be with a voice command, a head movement or a touch of a button.
"Elbee's wireless earbuds are more utilitarian than others." - The Verge
"Now you might be thinking, what so special about them? For starters they are tiny, and another reason to be excited is thanks to its smart features." - Ubergizmo
"[...] we have been following Elbee’s progress for a while now. In the space of wearables, hearables, in our opinion, offer the greatest proposition when it comes to convenience." - Fashnerd
The Elbee comes with a companion app that works with Android and iOS devices. It lets you connect to third party apps such as Google Maps (launching navigation home) or Nest (controlling your room temperature). New apps will be added over time and updated with the software via the companion app.
The companion app also lets you customize your voice and head commands. You can therefore create your very own shortcuts to your favorite apps and actions.
The companion app is also used for tweaking the sound to your personal preferences.
The companion app helps you locate the Elbee in case you lose one or both.
Lastly, we know how frustrating it can be to leave home without your headphones. As a result, we decided to offer you the possibility to request a notification whenever you leave home without your Elbee.
A developer's kit will be available, so that the Elbee can be integrated into any application. With this SDK, the possibilities are endless. Here are a couple of ideas:
- Play a boxing game using head movements
- Detect and notify you when you have bad posture
- Connect with wearables and get notifications for things like, how many steps you have taken during the day
- Real-time translation of foreign languages during a conversation
- And so much more...
For the past 1.5 years we have worked hard to create a small piece of technology that is beautiful in design and capable of controlling your smartphone seamlessly.
Together with our electronics team we have sourced the right components, keeping in mind optimal user experience and battery usage. We produced our prototypes with a local manufacturer to ensure quick iterations and shorter production cycles.
With our team of designers we have worked on several concepts and crafted multiple prototypes. We conducted focus groups to determine the best design and features for the Elbee. We have designed silicon earbuds using a patented technology that fits securely in your ear. The result is a product that is beautifully designed and comfortable to wear.
On the software side, we wanted to bring you the best possible user experience. We have developed high-precision algorithms for movement detection and we have partnered with one of the top speech recognition companies in the world. By using their technology, our software engineers have developed the voice algorithms of the Elbee.
With tested prototypes and a full bill of materials, we are now ready for production. Our team travelled to Shenzhen in China to source and to chose the right manufacturers for our PCB production, molding and final assembly.
The founders met during a tech conference 1.5 years ago. They are backed by a complementary team of engineers that is passionate about connected devices, wearables and home automation systems. They have also teamed up with PiliPili, an award-winning designer studio, and DVC, an electronics manufacturer. Altogether, the Elbee team is a mixture of people that have experience building products amongst other at Philips, Xerox and the European Space Institute.
We would also like to give a special thanks to everyone who has helped us along our journey: our family and friends, our investors, Juan Bosicard and Rodolphe d’Udekem from Impulse, Ronnie Raeymaekers from Indutec, RubyKub productions, ZenCar, ICAB Business & Technology Incubator and BetaCowork.
Our vision is to offer a new paradigm to how we communicate with our everyday connected devices and more generally the world around us. To make this vision come true, we need your help to bring the Elbee into mass production. The funds we will collect on Kickstarter will be used to finance tooling, components, launch of production, certifications and cost of distribution.
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Risks and challenges
In our upcoming production timeline, here are the risks and challenges we are facing.
On the hardware side, headphones that use bluetooth technology encounter challenges related to their antenna. As the Elbee is 100% wireless, we are also giving special attention to communication issues between left and right earpiece, making sure it is flawless between both of them.
On the manufacturing side, the process itself is always a challenge: problems in the molding, late arrival of components and other problems may occur. Our production team, led by Wen’s extensive 15 years of experience in new product introduction, has worked hard to find the right manufacturers and they will ensure a smooth production cycle.
But whatever the challenge, we promise to continue working hard to bring the Elbee to your doorstep and to always keep you and the community updated about our progress.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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