Story by Kris Wouk, via our site partner, Digital Trends
We’ve been keeping an eye on Doppler Labs’ Here One augmented reality earbuds since we first had hands-on time with the company’s Here Active Listening System. With the ability to blend in outside sound along with playback, the Here One allows users to engage with their surroundings much more than is possible with standard in-ear headphones. In September, the company announced pre-orders would begin shipping before the end of 2016, but ended up delaying the earbuds into 2017.
“At Doppler Labs, we hold ourselves to the highest standard, and we want to ensure every unit we ship hits that standard without exception,” the company wrote in a blog post. “That’s why we’ve made the decision to do one final validation build before starting mass production.” At first, the company said the Here One would ship in February, or March at the latest, but earlier this week, Doppler Labs confirmed that the earbuds would begin shipping to those who had pre-ordered them on February 21.
Doppler Labs made the most of the extra time to help listeners make the most out of the Here One. Alongside the news of the delay, the company announced partnerships with a slew of companies and organizations including the Cleveland Cavaliers, Coachella, JetBlue, the New York Mets, and the New York Philharmonic.
[HRAC CCO Mike Mettler adds: I’ve had personal experience with the Here Ones in various live concert settings, and I LOVE ’em!!!]
At a museum, for example, visitors could not only select their choice of music while they explore, but also listen to location-based commentary as they come to various exhibits, all while carrying on conversations with those around them. Through the partnership with the New York Philharmonic, on the other hand, users could listen to commentary discussing the music’s composer while still enjoying the music and the room’s acoustics.
Turning to sports, fans watching the latest Cavaliers game at the Quicken Loans Arena will be able to filter out crowd noise while listening to commentary, bringing the best parts of watching games from home into the arena. The Mets partnership works the same way, bringing commentary, stats, and more without the need to haul an AM radio to the game.
The Doppler Labs Here One will sell for $300. For more information, see the company’s website.
Article originally published on 11-22-2016. Updated on 01-25-2016 by Kris Wouk: Added news that the Here One will begin shipping on February 21.