The fit on earbuds varies wildly, largely because each person's earlobe is a unique and beautiful snowflake. Okay, maybe not beautiful. But if a pair of earbuds matched the exact shape of your ear, the days of painful buds that fall out too easily could be numbered. That's the concept behind OwnPhones, a San Francisco-based start-up that has created 3D printed wireless earbuds that are custom fitted to the shape of your ears.
The startup isn't alone in the 3D printed earbud space. A few weeks ago, Normals came out of the shadows with a similar concept. And in much the same way, OwnPhone users upload video of their ears, which will be converted into a 3D mold. The company offers a number of customization options, including the ability to choose the color, style and even earbud material, but OwnPhones doesn't elaborate on what those materials are.
Interestingly, OwnPhone users will be able to add various features for their set, including noise canceling ability, notifications or On/Off indicator LED lights. There are also three model types, with many design options in each: Fit, SmartFit and SmartFit Jewelry.
The buds themselves will communicate with your phone or other device via Bluetooth 4.0. Ownphones is currently running a Kickstarter campaign to raise $250,000 for its first set, which the company expects to release in March 2015. For $149, you can back the project and be among the first to receive a base model Fit.
If that doesn't suit you, Kickstarter backers have multiple pre-order options at their disposal. The first 500 customers can order the “Designer’s fit” for $175, or a Smartfit for $199. After the first 2,000 earbuds are sold, you can preorder a basic set for $199, a Designer’s Fit set for $249, or a Smart Fit set for $299. You'll have to be patient, though; the first set of OwnPhones won't be available until March 2015.