The long anticipated Bragi Dash and its creator Nikolaj Hviid are at CES once again. But this year they showed up with the production version of the Dash. For backers of this product that supported Bragi on Kickstarter in early 2014, you are well versed in the challenges and associated delays with the fabled smart, wireless headphones. Bragi raised over $3.3 million on Kickstarter without a true working prototype – something Kickstarter does not even allow anymore. But if the reviews hold true – the product appears to be well worth the wait.
The Verge demoed the product at CES and stated;
“..even though I thought I wanted a simpler wireless earbud, I left the demo desperate to put the earbuds, the charging case, and all of the Dash’s other features through their paces. My colleague James Vincent was right when he saw the last Dash beta version at IFA. The Bragi really is the wireless earbud of my dreams. But not for long.”
“This is probably the slickest gadget set-up I have ever experienced… The award-winning wireless fitness-tracking headphones have been a long time coming, but if these first few moments are anything to go by, that wait has been worth it.”
Both reviewers commented on the slick technology the Bragi team magically incorporated into the product that allows the user to hear ambient sounds – when you want. This means you can pretty much leave them in your ears – until the battery runs out. Bragi also switched from Bluetooth to “near-field magnetic induction” (NFMI) to sync the individual buds. Incorporating this technology was one of the causes of the extended delays but one reviewer said the sound quality was “excellent” and Nikolaj said expect others (perhaps Apple?) to copy the audio tech soon enough.
Beyond a product that appears to be poised to define the wireless headphone industry, Nikolaj and his team must be commended for its continuous stream of updates and communication with the early backers. Without the transparency most certainly mutiny would have ensued. But the play by play evolution of the product kept the masses at bay and now the wait is over as a 1000 Bragi Dash units have been shipped and another 5000 will be posted next Tuesday. Expect wide consumer release soon after.
Update: Ironically on the day Bragi was experiencing glowing reviews, rumors are rumbling that Apple is planning to clone the Dash and offer a similar product under the Beats brand alongside the iPhone 7 this Fall. 9to5Mac wrote extensively about the new Apple device today noting the company has registered the AirPods trademark as part of the new product push. Bragi will have a bit of a head start though as online sales start this month.
Watch the review video from the Verge below.
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