Instead of physically connecting to your ears, the N1 makes use of a technology known as “Smart Beaming” to deliver music that no one else can hear to you and your friends. In order for it to work, ultrasonic waves are transmitted directly into your auditory system, while everyone else hears nothing more than a whisper.
The ultrasonic waves create two pockets of audible noise around the user’s ears, providing a headphone-like experience complete with 3D spatial audio — but without the need to put on any headphones or headphones-like gear. As you move around, the bar uses motion sensors to track your movements, allowing it to adjust the direction of the ultrasonic beams and ensure that your audio is not cut off as you do so.
As previously stated, Noveto claims that the N1 will be equipped with artificial intelligence-based facial recognition, which will allow it to provide “effortless” communication with smart assistants — meaning the ability to communicate with the voice assistant without having to say “Alexa” every time.
What about the other people present in the room? Noveto claims that when you’re three feet away from someone, there’s a 90 percent reduction in audio, so you shouldn’t be able to pick up on much background noise, as long as you’re not too close to the person who’s listening in.
That being said, three feet is a significant amount of space, so this technology will not be suitable for more confined spaces such as train cars or places where social distancing is not observed.
Because the Noveto N1‘s design does not lend itself to portability, it is likely that you will be using it at your residence or in an office. And, on that front, it will blend in seamlessly, with a design that resembles a soundbar or wireless speaker, complete with a fabric mesh on either side of a main panel that appears to contain what appear to be tracking cameras on either side. Meanwhile, the circle in the center of the screen promises real-time feedback on the N1’s interactions with the user. Apparently, the acronym HAL stands for “Heuristic Activity LED,” but we can only hope that it doesn’t have any other similarities to Arthur C Clarke’s murderous artificial intelligence.
A set of control buttons can be found on the top of the N1, as well as a 3.5mm and USB-C connector. Wireless connectivity will be provided by the speaker itself, which will include built-in Bluetooth and Wi-Fi capabilities.
Production is currently underway, though there is no word on when it will be available for purchase or how much it will cost at this time. We’ll give it a shot as soon as we can, regardless of the outcome.