When you think about it, technology is very much a reflection of socialism and capitalism. Within this context, regarding the 2013 CES, there were multiple levels to which competition existed. One could truly sense this with TVs, earphones, headphones, and Bluetooth devices. In the near future, you’ll see my review of Bell’O – headphones and BlueAnt Bluetooth devices.
To begin, there were no shortages of entities’ sporting headphones; I had a chance to checkout those at Wicked Audio (who’s parent company is Empire Brands Inc.), and BellO. From a discussion, the reflection of why is due to the growing demand. The very core reason Bell’O (www.bello.com) entered the earphone market last year and is now moving into headphones. To go further, in highlighting my interview of BellO, this is a company that goes out of its way to understand the end user, as well as, those ultimately doing the installing, even down to the do-it-yourselfers. And the proof is in the designed of their TV Wall Mounts, per a walk-through tour I got. It is with this mindset they entered the earphone and headphone marketplace. In addition, they will shortly be introducing a new type of headset.
In contrast, WickedAudio (www.wickedaudio.com) is under the umbrella of Empire Brands Inc., a parent company, to my understanding, that has been in the headphone business for at least 14 years. And as such, their response to the surge in consumer interest has been a high end model called the Solus. They also have another group called the Reverb. During my interview, I had the opportunity to listen on my device and another device, using both. They each have their individualized distinctiveness, which tells them apart and can be appreciated.
Switching gears, Bluetooth devices have become more progressive. For example, a company called AfterShokz (www.aftershokz.com), has developed a model called the ‘Bluez.’ It doubles as headphones and a bluetooth wireless connected device. But, the look, shape, and feel is quite extraordinary. In fact, someone would have to tell you it’s a functioning Bluetooth, if you’re not familiar with the product. And yes, I had the chance to try them out, and really cool. On the other hand, one of their competitors, BlueAnt (www.blueantwireless.com), which I’ll be reviewing, has several looks; the ‘Endure’ – providing the traditional look; the ‘Ribbon’ – giving the freedom to wirelessly play music or make and receive calls, as streamed to the included ear buds or your headphones; and the ‘Commute’ – offering handsfree texting, among many of its benefits; notwithstanding, a new Bluetooth arrival on the way, which will be different from their current brands, per my interview with them. And yes, I did get to see it. You’ve just got to love innovation, and how that increases consumer choice.