Starting The Design Process
During the beginning of the design process for Shadow Wireless, we began with asking ourselves questions about music lovers and our competitors. Most wireless earphones force you to sacrifice sound, comfort, style or some combination of all three; how can we set ourselves apart? We asked ourselves:
What if we created a wireless headphone for our customers that felt like it was tailor made? Is such a thing even possible? What would consumers truly want from a wireless in ear headphone and what did they want to wear?
We took inspiration from jewelry and fashion to create a headphone that would truly become a part of you, just like your Shadow.
We created and tested over 30 prototypes before finding the best overall concept.
And then we created and tested some more:
Until we found a design that was so comfortable, that people forgot they were wearing it.
The fit is everything
A former running shoe designer on the SOL REPUBLIC team engrained a strong understanding in our minds:
If you want someone to truly adopt and wear your technology, you’ve got to start by respecting the body… not by imposing your will on it.
This fused an understanding of biomechanics and human factors to make sure to create an experience that will be comfortable for the most people possible.
Data from NASA and the military was used to help us dial in the fit
Then came more testing of the fit and materials was done until we came up with what we call “Biomorphic” fit.
What does “Biomorphic” fit mean?
Several factors make up our definition of biomorphic fit:
1. Materials that flex and adapt to you
2. Perfect weight balance
3. Materials that feel right against the skin
4. Feels natural
Now that we found the proper fit, it was time to make Shadow a reality! However, what we wanted to build had not been done before. So we had to work with our partners to come up with a new manufacturing method.
We wanted to find a unique approach to color and materials that would set the Shadow apart. We carefully selected the materials and colors to feel unexpected for a headphone.
From the metal accents (we settled upon rose gold, gold and gray) to the flexible neckband in navy blue, white and black, every element was hand picked.
“We designed SHADOW to go toe-to-toe with wired headphones in terms of kickass sound and hid a powerful battery in a lightweight, flexible design that’s so comfortable and sleek you’ll want to wear it all day.” – Kevin Lee, Co-Founder at SOL REPUBLIC
The finished product
We introduced Shadow wireless in Summer 2015 and since then have been featured on Billboard as one of the best Bluetooth earbuds from $80 to $200, Rolling Stone, and have created additional color ways like Black & Rose Gold and Navy Blue & Gold.
Soldiers of Sound and their Shadow
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