Bose has launched a new set of headphones that allow users to boost certain sounds from the outside world, and block others, in much the same way as hearing aids.
The new Hearphones look similar to the company’s QuietControl 30s noise cancelling earbuds, featuring the same around-the-neck design.
But the new headphones allow users to decide which sounds get blocked and also which direction those external sounds are coming from.
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By using the built-in directional microphones in this way, users who have trouble focusing on a conversation in crowded areas should be able to filter out the ambient noise to make specific people more audible.
Bose has yet to reveal how much the new earbuds will cost, but Doppler Labs’ Here One alternatives, which come with similar technology, will go on sale for $299 when they launch in February 2017.
That said, the company recently added the companion ‘Bose Hear’ app to the App Store, which suggests we’ll be seeing a price revealed for the Hearphones sooner rather than later.
The App Store page reveals more about the headphones’ capabilities, with the description detailing “conversation-enhancing headphones to let you hear the world on your terms.”
Screenshots show you’ll be able to turn the “World Volume” up and down, while adjusting specific frequencies, while the “Directivity’ menu seems to offer quick settings for choosing which section of your surroundings you want to enhance or block.
It also looks as though you can save presets, such as ‘Gym’ or ‘Airplane’, so if you manage to get the perfect settings you won’t have to mess around boosting and limiting sounds in the same way again.
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The full description reads: “Innovative technologies amplify softer sounds, let you turn down the distractions in noisy environments and focus on what you want to hear—like a conversation across the table.
“You can also use them as controllable noise cancelling wireless headphones for your music or calls or just for quiet. Take control of the noise, and hear the world better.”
Bose has also submitted a user manual to the FCC – another sign that we’ll be hearing about availability and pricing very soon.
Considering the company is running an event, which seems to be for the official Hearphones launch, today, we’d expect to have more details by the end of today so stay tuned.
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Let us know what you think of the Hearphones in the comments.