You may or may not have heard of Anker—the small but impressive battery maker that’s slowly been getting into other markets. Its bread and butter is its battery division, but it also sells phone cases, cables, headphones and speakers. Anker is now taking it one step further with the introduction of a new audio brand called Zolo.
Zolo will be its own brand away from Anker-branded products that will focus solely on audio. The first product to come from Zolo is the Liberty+ Earphones—a Bluetooth bud earphone set-up that features the first-ever graphene driver technology in wireless earphones and Bluetooth 5.0.
The earphones look like many other wireless earphones out there. They feature a nondescript design that’s meant to allow for better functionality than aesthetic beauty. It’s a trade-off but one worth taking if the sound hopes to be better than previous wireless buds. Inside the box will be the earphones, case, six rubber tips (S, M, L) and six cover fins (S, M, L).
Zolo is jumping into a robust market that is being dominated by Apple’s AirPods. The Liberty+ Earphones probably won’t contain the same magic and functionality with iPhones, but its main selling point is audio quality.
Housing the two little earbuds will be a carrying case that can charge them as well. On a single charge, the buds alone have a 3.5-hour playback time, but that’s upped to 48 hours when used with the case in between usage. Connection is supposed to be super easy with a two-step process Zolo is calling “Push and Go.”
Zolo also equipped the Liberty+ Earphones with a water and sweat proof design (IPX5) and an iOS/Android companion app to maximize audio quality.
The earphones will be initially funded through a Kickstarter campaign that started June 20. MSRP will be $149, but if supported via Kickstarter, customers can pick up the Liberty+ Earphones for as little as $89 (Early Birds). There are other higher-tiered options that feature multiple sets of the earphones or special customized versions, but that’s more expensive.
Originally there was a $79 option (500 available units) but they’ve already sold out. The $50,000 goal has been bypassed by a wide margin. As of the writing of this post, the Liberty+ Earphones has 2,157 backers and over $190,000 in funding that’s going up.
Estimated delivery for the Zolo Liberty+ Earphones will be October 2017.