Headphones are great for listening to music, some even work fine when you plug them into your smartphone. However, keeping them in (or on) your ears for too long, may make you feel a little uncomfortable, you may even have a 'tired ear', your head and your ears may hurt. But what if you could listen to music, talk on Skype and do all sorts of sound-related things with the help of a device that makes you feel like you're in the middle of a sound surround system?
Batband by Studio Banana Things is that device! Unlike conventional headphones, Batband lets you hear the sounds as if a radio was playing music in your head while leaving your ears uncovered and exposed to your surroundings. So, if you're not very happy with the fact you can't hear anything other than your (often too loud) music and are subsequently almost immune to what is going to around you, put the Batband on and experience a whole new acoustic world.
According to developers, Batband works via bone conduction, consisting of 3 transducers - two touching the sides of your head (temporal bone) and one at the back of your head (occipital bone) - 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. Furthermore, its discreet use means that any vocal content you receive is nearly inaudible to outsiders.
It's incredibly easy to use. You just place it around the back of your head, pair it to a mobile device through Bluetooth 2.1 (one microUSB port is also available) and control its features using the touch sensors. There, you are set to go and listen to your favourite tunes, make and take phone and Skype calls via a built-in microphone (without anyone hearing your conversations) or listen to voiced GPS instructions while on-the-go. A built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery, allowing six hours of audio playback and eight hours of conversation, powers the device.
You can already pre-order the Batband on the Studio Banana Thing's website for £95 ($149) or check out their Kickstarter campaign. They have already reached their goal of $150,000 and even surpassed it, but if you're into some perks, go ahead and click!