Doppler Labs Ships Unique App-Controlled Wireless Earbuds

Doppler Labs announced that it has started shipping its Kickstarter-funded Here Active Listening system, a set of unique wireless earbuds controlled by a smartphone app that lets users “instantly control and personalize their live audio environment.”

The initial production run of the $199 buds is limited to 10,000 units and there is a wait list of more than 50,000, according to the company.

“Here is not a headphone,” said Fritz Lanmam, co-founder and executive chairman of Doppler Labs. “It’s a computer for the ears—and the first app we built is designed for enhancing live music experiences. With this shipment we will mark a milestone in both AR [augmented reality] and VR [virtual reality] as we push the boundaries of what it means to wear tech. This is just the tip of the iceberg of what Here can eventually do.”

Doppler recently co-hosted a “Sound Experience” event in Santa Monica with Remote Control Productions, the film score company run by veteran composer Hans Zimmer, to demonstrate how the Here system can be used to enhance a live listening experience, something they call audio augmented reality (AAR). The company will also demonstrate how “custom stage presets” can be used to enhance live music at the upcoming 2016 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio, CA.

The Doppler press release said: “By creating Here Optimized Stages, festival attendees can act as their own personal sound mixer during Coachella, enabling them to experience music in a way that’s never happened before at a live event.”

The Here Active Listening system is a computer, microphone, and speaker rolled into one earbud that uses tools such as a volume control, five-band equalizer, preset filters, and effects like bass boost, reverb, and flange to give “dynamic control over your audio environment.”

Following the launch of Here Active Listening on Kickstarter last year, Doppler Labs also raised $17 million in funding. Investors include the Universal Music Group and music industry names such as Mark Ronson, Tiesto, Quincy Jones, and Hans Zimmer.

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