New York-based Waverly Labs are a wearable technology startup on a mission to take language translation to the next level with Pilot, their smart Bluetooth earpiece.
Since launching a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo back in May, Pilot has received a phenomenal amount of interest. Pilot has become the 11th most successful Indiegogo campaign to date; so far raising $3.06 million, exceeding thier $75K flexible funding goal by 3177 percent.
The Pilot crowdfunding campaign reached $1M in 2.5 hours after launching and the promo video got over 45 million views within two weeks. I think it’s fair to say the language translating earpiece has caused a bit of a stir, and if you’re thinking of launching a crowdfunding project, let Pilot be your inspiration.
Since smashing Indiegogo, Waverly Labs have re-located to a new facility dedicated to hardware startups in the Brooklyn Navy Yards and are choosing a manufacturing partner in China’s Shenzhen province, where there are plenty.
So why all the hype? To quote the CEO of Waverly Labs “We’re on a journey to create a World without language barriers.”
Pilot uses cutting-edge machine translation, voice synthesis and speech recognition technology which enables users to have a conversation in foreign languages with clear understanding. Basically; when you speak, the other person hears it in their language through the earpiece.
For situations where multiple people with different native languages are communicating, the smart earpiece features a “Conference Mode” which translates numerous languages. Another feature allows you to broadcast a speech and translate to everybody in the room through a smartphone’s loudspeaker. Included with the Pilot package is also a second Bluetooth earpiece for wireless music streaming.
When it’s released, Pilot’s supported languages will be English, Spanish, Italian, French and Portuguese. Additional languages will be arriving in 2017.
Waverly Labs are releasing the Pilot V1 app at the end of October 2016. The reason for the early release is so users can become familiar with the voice synthesis translation software before the arrival of the earpiece. The Pilot V1 app is compatible with iOS and Android devices with Bluetooth LE support.
Pilot is powered by a rechargeable battery that gives you up to 6 hours of talk time.
The retail price of the smart translating earpiece will be $299 USD. A discount of 33% is still available over at Indiegogo (at the time of writing). The estimated shipping date for Indiegogo backers is May 2017.
As far as wearable technology goes; we cover some devices that are not so useful, and some that are useful. If the Pilot Bluetooth earpiece works as well as its makers claim; it would certainly fall into the “useful” category..