In markets where customization is everything, 3D printing is the technology to get us there. Last week we covered the launch of ‘Normal‘, the tailor-made, 3D printed earphones. As of today ‘Normal’ is not alone in their endeavors.
Today a company called OwnPhones have launched a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign for their very own 3D printed customizable earbuds. The company is seeking to raise $250,000 by August 25th in order to launch themselves into the market. It appears that they are well on their way to this goal, judging from the fact that they have raised over $35,000 already, and today is only the first day of their campaign. For those who hurry, there are a limited number of ‘Early-Bird’ rewards which feature OwnPhones discounted to 50% off.
What differentiates OwnPhones from their competition are a few main attributes and features. The first is that these earbuds are wireless, making them ideal for those involved in sports or athletic activities. In addition OwnPhones allow for total customization, which includes the ability to select from up to 10,000 different colors and exterior designs. These also include several different material options. If you want the outside of your earbuds to be shaped like a skull, that’s now possible. How about a gold plated tree, or a silver plated fox? Yep!
If this isn’t enough to get you to pull out your wallet and back their campaign, maybe the fact that the company will also offer an ‘OwnStatus’ feature on their earbuds. The OwnStatus feature is an LED indicator which can change from red, to yellow, to green, depending on what the user selects on their mobile device. A green light indicates that the wearer is willing to chat, a yellow light that they are busy, and a red light indicates that they do not want to be disturbed. This would certainly come in handy for those of you who have your music as well as your workout interrupted by chatty individuals at the gym.
“OwnPhones represents a new paradigm in manufacturing,” stated Itamar Jobani, the company’s founder and CEO. “Instead of producing millions of identical earbuds for different ears, we 3D print earbuds tailor made to each user. Ears are like fingerprints – each one is unique, so we were able to develop earbuds that are custom made to actually fit your ears properly!”
It’s quite easy to get started on customizing your earbuds. Using a proprietary mobile application, users can take a short video of their ear, or have a friend do it for them. OwnPhone will then receive this video, and convert it into a 3D printable model file. After this, the fun begins. Users get to choose the exact style, material, and color which they feel best suits the way they would like their ears to look while wearing OwnPhones. Once completed their earbuds will be shipped to their doorstep.
Ownphones come in four different design types:
- Fit – Normal custom fit earbuds, with no exterior design
- Designer Fit – Same as ‘Fit’ but with the choice of thousands of different designs
- Smart Fit – These have the ability to have ‘OwnStatus’ enabled, and other smart features
- Jewelry Collection – Metal plated OwnPhone designs
Those wishing to back their Kickstarter campaign can do so with as little as $149, while supplies last, and receive their very own pair of OwnPhones. The earbud prices, via reward, go all the way up to $399 for the jewelry finished customizable Ownphones.
It certainly is interesting to watch as several new companies emerge, specifically around the 3D printing of products. As 3D printing technology becomes more affordable, and more precise, this trend should continue to play out. Have you backed this project on Kickstarter? Let us know in the OwnPhones forum thread on 3DPB.com. Check out the Kickstarter pitch video below.
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