Portable music players allow you to carry music on the go. With iPods and mp3 players, your favorite song or artist is always a fingertip away. Traditional earphones allow listeners to plug in to music and even share it with a friend. Portable speakers can play great sound for a gathering. What if you wanted to share your favorite song with more than just one friend and do not have portable speakers with you?
Turkish designer, Cansu Akarsu, has designed an earphone concept that will allow the music listener to share music instantly, with multiple friends, without using speakers. ‘Outloud’ is the title of the concept, and it looks like the earphone project might be a hit with the iPod generation. The inspiration for Outloud came to Cansu Akarsu when she was browsing through the findings of a study titled Moving from Data to Insights to Opportunities. The study underlined the need for a single device that could serve the private use of an individual as well as allow that individual to use the device as a portable speaker.
Outloud is that single device that can be used as a private earphone as well as a portable speaker on which you can play music out loud.
The design aesthetic of Outloud is based on the traditional ‘clip’ earphones. A circular rubber shell, the size of your outer ear, houses the voice coil and acoustics. The rubber shell is attached to an ear clip that would sit on your outer ear.
Though the body frame of the earphone concept may sound familiar, it is the arrangement of the voice coil and acoustics inside the blue-colored rubber shell that marks the ingenuity of the earphone concept’s clever design. The voice coil, placed inside a frame, is covered by the acoustic cone and the front shell. Behind the voice coil is a bendable connector that connects the frame to the coil. This bendable connector allows Outloud to transform from earphones to speaker.
If a user wants to use Outloud as an earphone, they simply have to plug its jack into the mp3 player and clip on the earphones. If they want the same earphones to turn into a sound system, they just need to bend the rubber shell outwards. This would turn the earphones into speakers with the bendable connector transforming into the cone.
Cansu Akarsu’s Outloud speaker project is an intelligent mix of conventional design and unconventional sound engineering.