These might look like your typical pair of earrings outfitted with — rather large — pearls, but they’re more than just jewelry: they actually double as ultra-discreet earbuds (through Gizmodo). The clip-on or stud H1 Audio earrings from Nova Audio equipped with two loudspeakers behind both pearls (which are realin parentheses) that use directional sound to send audio to your ears.
says Nova the technology adds “a sound layer” to your environment, allowing you to hear what’s going on around you while still enjoying your audio, similar to Sony’s open-style LinkBuds or Aftershokz’s bone conduction headphones. That means they don’t have any noise-canceling properties, which can be useful for athletes who want to stay aware of their surroundings, as well as anyone who doesn’t want to tune out everything from.
Despite keeping the speakers outside your ear, Nova says the directional sound technology helps prevent other people from hearing what you’re listening to. The audio earphones provide up to 3.5 hours of music playback or 2.5 hours of talk time using the four built-in microphones. Appropriately looking like an elegant earring pouch, the included charging case provides up to three full charges for a total of approximately 14 hours of listening. There is also a built-in button on the earrings that allows you to control audio playback and phone calls.
As someone who wears earrings quite often, I’m not sure how I’d feel about replacing my run-of-the-mill stud earrings with a pair of earrings that radiate sound. Something I like about my Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro is that I have the option to wear earrings and the earplugs if I want. Plus, the earrings weigh about 7.7 ounces each, a bit heavy if you’re not used to jewelry tugging on your earlobes.
But I can still see how Nova’s audio earphones could be an attractive option, especially if you’re looking for an all-in-one solution for audio and style. Nova isn’t the only brand that has tried to combine earbuds and fashion (although not too many hang outside your ear). Planet Beyond invented neat pair of shell-shaped in-ear earplugs that you can add various accessoriesand there are even earrings there that stylishly hook onto your AirPods.
Nova’s audio earrings are available in gold and silver and cost €695 (~$753 USD) and €595 (~$645 USD) respectively. While they’re currently available across Europe, Nova says they’ll be available in the US and Japan early this year.