Jawbone is investing in Bluetooth earpieces following the rise in demand for large screen smartphones.
The company’s vice president of product marketing, Travis Bogard, said the latest Bluetooth earpiece will help restore intimacy to phone calls.
“We’re missing out on the emotional connection of voice because phone calls on today’s large smartphones aren’t convenient,” Bogard said in a statement.
A new Era
Jawbone hopes its tiny and voice-enabled Era earpiece will make ‘phablets’ more comfortable to use. The new Era marks several improvements in design, functionality and ease-of-use.
Size is down 42 per cent compared to the old Era, and the need for an earloop has been negated by a new earbud design that has been in testing for almost three years.
One way Jawbone has managed to shrink the headset is by coupling it with a charging dock small enough to fit in your pocket. When not in use, dock the Era and walk on. The dock gives the petite Bluetooth earpiece 10 hours of talk time.
Voice commands make it possible to use your smartphone hands-free. A dedicated button launches Apple’s Siri and Google’s Now, while the Era leverages an improved voice-based interface.
Phone calls benefit from a few upgrades: there are new microphones and a custom digital signal processing (DSP) algorithm. Together, these technologies help rid the soundstage of ambient noise and make it easier for the Era to clearly recognise voices.
Jawbone will release the Era on 30 April for $149, or $179 with the charging case. It will be made available in black, bronze and red streak, and in silver cross.