MWC 2017: Sony’s newer wireless earphones let outside noise inside to keep you safe on the run

Sony showcased its first completely wireless earphones – Xperia Ear – at MWC last year. Now, the company is working on the second generation of its Xperia Ear earphones, and it’s calling it Xperia Ear Open Style Concept as it’s still a prototype at this stage. The virtual assistant-equipped earphone is being developed inside Sony’s Future Lab incubator program, and it features something Sony’s calling “open-ear” technology.

The “open-ear” technology inside the new Xperia Ear earphones (that’s a lot of ears) lets users hear outside noise. This might not seem like a great idea at first, definitely for people who have noise cancelling earphones, but it’s practical in some scenarios such as running or jogging. It helps users by keeping them aware of the surroundings so that they stay safe from the traffic. However, it’s not a completely new idea. Samsung’s Gear Icon X already have this feature.

Sony Xperia Ear Open Style Concept Earphones

Sony’s earphones, however, have circular earbuds with an open centre, allowing outside noice to pass through along with the music. The earbuds deliver sound directly to the ear canal using two spacial acoustic conductors and driver units. The battery and the controls are integrated into a casing that sits wrapped around your ears. These earphones also feature Sony’s Agent virtual assistant, which can recognise voices and certain head gestures to perform activities.

The Japanese company also has a new “Anytime Talk” feature up its sleeve, which lets users start a group conversation with the push of a single button or by making a certain head gesture. A beta version of this feature is coming to the first-generation Xperia Ear first. Sony also says that it’s working with makers of the LINE messaging app on a new integrated voice experience (whatever that means). There’s no information related to price or launch time frame as of now.

[Source: Sony | Via: Engadget]

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