This looks like a pretty nifty concept.
OwnPhones Mobile Ear Scan creates a 3D model of your ear, you choose your customizations, and they print the buds just for you.
I’m in on the pre-release 50% off mailing list and will fill my ears with this tech as soon as possible. I’ll let you know how it goes with this gadget once it gets here. I go to bed listening to something every night, and have tried most everything for listening without bothering my wife. I’m not sure if that fits in with one of the OwnPhones ‘activity profiles’, but I’ll do my best to make sure they include it.
This idea of cosmetically filling our input holes with a customized device, to enhance our perception of the world, by extending our physical limitations has been in play for some time now. A better (less accessible) version of this exact idea has been on the hearing-aid market for years.
OwnPhones have announced that their Kickstarter campaign will launch in July, with a 50% off ‘Early Bird’ discount.
With retail prices ranging from $299USD to $449USD, this seems like a pretty good deal for what they are promising.
As far as conversations go, I’m a big fan of discussions that concern how human evolution through technology disenfranchises the lower classes (and by ‘the lower classes’ I mean the 98% of the world’s population who will not be buying this product). We have developed more invasive technology that literally plugs directly into the auditory cortex, but we won’t even entertain that concept in the retail market within the next ten years. Until then, OwnPhones is offering an in ear option that can use a light on the earphone to transmit a ‘status’ to other people – yep! .. green means ‘I’m available’.. any other color means you need a smack in the face! .. whatever .. I really am going to buy some…
Here are some details from the press release:
From the basic version, users can add OwnErgonomics, a system that allows them to specify their activity profile, whether running, snowboarding, parkour, etc. With this information, OwnPhones then combines motion capture analysis data and a mechanical simulation for the selected activity to help determine the materials, some softer to act as a shock absorbing area and some more rigid to keep the earphones in place, needed to construct the earbuds so they stay snug and safe in the user’s ear (according to the user’s activities and intensity level).
OwnPhones mobile app (iOS to start, Android to follow), and with the help of a friend, create a short video of their ears (both left and right). The OwnPhones mobile app uploads the video to the company’s servers and there, using advanced Photogrammetry algorithms, is converted into a 3D model.
OwnPhones offers users access to a huge selection of styles, colors and materials (not only plastic, but also gold and silver, for example) so they can fully personalize their earbuds to fit their individual taste and identity (some will look sporty while others can be jewelry pieces).