Sony have a new pair of open-ear earphones that allow you to groove along to your favourite songs whilst never disconnecting from the world around you.
Sony’s ‘Xperia Ear Open’ headphones are the new earhole plugs from Sony that won’t block off the world around you thanks to holes in the buds. At first glance it looks like they’ve fallen apart but those large gaps at the top of the earbuds are entirely purposeful and a lot of what makes the Xperia Ear Open special.
Whilst there has been no shortage of earphones attempting to integrate real-world sound into what you’re hearing until now this has been done with a tiny microphone that records real-world sounds to play back to you. The Xperia Ear Open allows you to listen to your music whilst being able to hear like you don’t even have earphones on.
It may sound like it might be distracting having your music playing whilst still engaged with your surroundings but those who’ve tried it say it feels natural. Like playing music from your stereo when with your friends, or having muzak in the background as you navigate a shop it doesn’t distract you in conversations. They say that because they’re holed you’re hearing things almost as you would normally.
The one downside to these earphones is that, because it works with a physical hole, there’s no way to switch so that you only hear your music if you want to. Whilst it’s a much more natural effective way to hear the outside world with earphones it, the one’s that used microphones often had the ability to turn that channel off.
Whilst the sound quality isn’t bad on the Xperia Ear Open the way that you’ll be hearing music you won’t be getting the best quality listening experience. The earphones are clearly much more about function than quality, which they do well but are unlikely to replace your favourite buds. Thanks to the unique design the earphones reportedly don’t fit that snugly as they can’t go very deep into the ear.
Whilst Sony don’t have a release date or pricing details for the Xperia Ear Open and are still calling it a concept currently. They have been working on refining the earphones for over a year now so assumably we can expect a release at some-point soon.