Looking like something Q would have invented for James Bond from the R&D division of MI6, the Bluetooth Batband is a piece of sound technology allowing you to listen to your “private soundscape” as well as the world surrounding you. Its technology delivers a high fidelity acoustic experience through a bone-conduction system.
Studio Banana Things is the company behind the ear-free system and other delightfully innovative items, such as the popular “power napping” Ostrich Pillow and The Kangaroo Light. Batband’s goal is to revolutionize the way we wear our acoustic gear and hear music. I had a chance to speak with Ali Ganjavian and Key Kawamura, founders of Studio Banana Things (a division of Studio Banana), and they shared their vision behind the creation of the Batband, the technology involved in the headpiece and plans for even more innovative designs and products.
The Toggle: Tell us more about the design and collaboration behind the Batband.
Studio Banana Things: Batband was created by our designers at Studio Banana Things in collaboration with our friends from London-based design studios Postler Ferguson and Innovation Quarter from Bangor University. We all collaborated to make the Batband possible. The device has an intuitive design with easy touch controls built into the band, with sensors on the left controlling power and phone calls and a slider on the right for volume and changing music tracks.
TT: How does the technology behind the Batband work?
SBT: Batband works via bone conduction, consisting of transducers that emit sound waves perceived by your “private” inner ear, thus freeing your “social” outer ear. Sound waves are transmitted at a frequency that can be conducted through the bones of the skull. Your ears remain free, therefore you get to hear twice as much, without compromising on comfort, quality or style. In its most simplest terms, it transmits sound via your bones sending acoustics into your skull in three places – two above your ears and one at the back of your head – while still allowing you to hear the world around you.
TT: Where is Studio Banana now in terms of its funding goals? When will the product be ready to ship?
SBT: Batband received full funding (via Kickstarter) in 5 days, which is totally mind blowing! Technology is not our natural arena; however, when design meets technology, things are made exciting. We are quick learners and have been very lucky to have a great team of collaborators who spur us on. Our first batch of Batbands will be out in the market mid-2016, and we are super excited to take this acoustic dream to market.
TT: Any new features to be added to the Batband in the future?
SBT: We don’t have any new designs or features to talk about yet, however as you know, we are a team of international dreamers, and with this comes a whole world of imagination and we are always coming up with new fun and functional designs in our studio. Our network of the Kickstarter backer family has grown over the years and are super supportive of our work, which powers us on to create more nifty designs.
At Studio Banana Things, they believe “life is for enjoying.” They take action and start imagining how lives can be improved by introducing smart design solutions, making the everyday better. Interested in purchasing the Batband for a pre-order price of $199? Visit their website for more information.