All about that Basslet: Wearable subwoofer thumps your wrist
At CES, you're always sure to see some wearables that go off the beaten path. One of the most original wrist-worn wearables we've seen this year is Lofelt's Basslet, a watch-like device that acts as a subwoofer for your headphones.
The simple idea behind Basslet: A dongle attaches to the headphone jack of your phone or music player, which you then plug wired headphones into. The Basslet device itself, worn on your wrist, then receives a signal via Bluetooth and vibrates in sync with the music's bass. While the wearable is silent to other people, the vibrating of your wrist gives your body the pound of a subwoofer.
Demoing the device at CES 2017, I enjoyed the experience. Though your music won't sound any different to your ears, the wrist vibration is similar to the body-rattling bass you'd experience in a car with a tricked-out system. My brain perceived it as being connected to the music, and it enhanced the listening experience – especially in bass-heavy hip-hop tracks.
I didn't notice any blatant latency during the demo, even in a crowded showroom with potential interference from numerous nearby Bluetooth connections.
The company says the device will last for over six hours of continuous playtime, and the wearable can be customized to fit with any standard 24-mm strap. The current version only works with wired headphones, but a company representative tells us it's working on ways for future versions to support wireless listening.
While it's currently aimed at headphone users, Lofelt sees the device eventually pairing with games and VR, among other areas.
Basslet is up for pre-order now, and scheduled to go on sale on February 7, both at Amazon (US and UK) and the product page below. It costs US$199.
Product page: Basslet
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