Monday, March 7, 2016

Aivvy shows what you get by combining a music streaming service and headphones

Written by Kristofer Wouk — While the rise of Bluetooth in headphones has allowed more freedom while listening to music, listeners are still tied down to a point. After all, you can’t leave your phone or iPod too far away, since you need it to keep the music flowing. Aivvy (pronounced “ivy”) aims to change that.

While the Aivvy Headphone looks like a standard pair of headphones at first glance, it’s what you don’t see that makes all the difference. The headphones are bundled with Aivvy’s digital music service, with eight pre-populated music channels available as soon as the user puts them on.

The headphones have built-in gestures, similar to the Parrot Zik and others, but here they don’t just control playback. With just a flick of a finger, the listener can personalize the music in a manner similar to the system used by Pandora. And Aivvy takes this a step further by paying attention to what time of the day you listen to certain music, and adjusting the music it plays accordingly.

“Aivvy is striving to understand more than just what you like, but why you like certain music, and when you like it,” said David Ring, co-founder of Aivvy. “Soon, Aivvy won’t just be delivering the music that you want to hear, but the music that you want to hear when you want to hear it. I like EDM, but that doesn’t mean I want to hear the new Skrillex record at a dinner party. Aivvy will understand that.”

When the listener plugs the headphones in to charge, they connect to the Aivvy Cloud, where both the user’s listening preferences and the kind of music they listen to throughout the day are analyzed. The music channels are then updated accordingly.

Beyond the music service, the Aivvy Headphone packs in premium features, like starting playback when you put the headphones on, and pausing playback as soon as you take them off. This is a feature seen in other headphones as well, but the difference here is that since Aivvy provides the music, the listener never needs to worry about whether or not their music player of choice is nearby.

The headphones look promising on their own, but for Aivvy, this is just the beginning. “The exciting part of Aivvy is the smart delivery service that learns your taste in music and serves music to you accordingly. Sure, it’s releasing now as headphones, but you’ll see Aivvy start to pop up in portable speakers, sound bars, and even inside your car,” Ring said.

The Aivvy Headphone will be available both at retail and from the company’s website when it launches in the third quarter of this year.

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