freecle’s αble: Cutting Edge Noise Cancelling Headphones

Benerva Suarez
January 7, 2020

In our modern-day life, it is often hard to find environments that are a hundred percent free from noise. Individuals are often stressed, distracted, or experiencing difficulty in focusing on a single subject for a greater length of time during most conversations. The distracting nature of noise coupled with the hazardous effects of long-term exposure to constant sounds makes it clear that it is time we pay attention to the noise exposure levels in our environment.

Anticipating the perils of constant background noises, which now became an everyday part of life, a group of tech-savvy individuals has established a startup known as freecle and are now offering the world’s first audio-supporting device— αble. Constructed using intricate micro-electromechanical system microphones, αble is capable of shutting out nearly 99% of the surrounding background noise to help users focus better on the conversations at hand. 

The background noise epidemic

According to a recent study conducted on more than 250 participants aged 20 to 68 years old, constant exposure to background noise has had detrimental effects on their hearing in the long run. The study monitored 73,000 person-hours of noise monitoring for an in-depth understanding of the impact of noise in daily life. 

Not only did the noise experienced by 70% of the population exceed the recommended levels, but it was also worth noting that most individuals participating in the study weren’t from conventionally noisy jobs. 

While the aforementioned research is a general overview of background noise and its influence on us, a more specific study concerning urban residents made it astoundingly clear that noise exposure levels have seen a significant increase over time. Environments such as workplaces, recreational centers, shopping malls, schools, and even residential areas for that matter are severely affected by noise pollution. 

freecle's able

Cutting edge noise cancelling technology

After surveying nearly 500 public consumers across Japan and Euro-American regions, freecle designed cutting edge noise canceling headphones featuring Communication Focus Functions for optimum noise cancellation. Moreover, to promote a distraction-free conversation, the noise cancelling headphones help hear the voices of people in front of the user with greater emphasis, with the recommended distance being 50 cms to 150 cms.

“freecle Inc. surveyed 464 public consumers across Japan and Euro-American regions. The result told that 1 in 2 people are going through noise stress on a daily basis. Noise causes a decrease in concentration and negatively affect work performance and communication. No more noise stress. "αble" makes sound enjoyαble more than ever.” says Sosuke Kubo, CEO of freecle.

The patented technology by freecle improves the listening experience by curbing the background noises and also reducing the overall voice feedback of the users as well. Most earphones by default pick up the voice of users and provide constant audio feedback. Taking things further, freecle recognised the need for an improved user experience that is generated by toning down user feedback volume and as a result, applied ‘My Voice Cancelling Function’ for a more engaging conversation experience.

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The groundbreaking headphone comes with a smartphone application that helps users customise the audio experience altogether. For instance, users suffering from hearing impairments can configure the headphones to work more actively on the ear they experience most difficulty hearing with. The device also keeps track of user’s audibility and sends an alert when there may be a decline in the auditory capacity of its users. 

Future prospects 

“In-house development enabled to keep My Voice Cancelling Function at the reasonable cost while similar function installed in most of the expensive acoustic instruments inflates its cost from 3,000 to 5,000 USD.” says Kubo.

freecle’s coming-of-age noise cancelling headphones are set to go on sale by March, and a live demo will be held at the CES 2020 event. With Psychology Today highlighting that the number one cause of hearing loss would be noise pollution and not aging, tech savvy solutions such as the αble noise cancelling headphones will become the need of the hour.

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