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Home > Hardware Reviews > Mobiles

Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Aliph Jawbone 2

2. The science, design

THE SCIENCE

Jawbone eliminates real world noise better than any other headset because it is the only headset that can accurately separate speech from ambient noise.

The mobile phone is the prevailing communication tool for business and personal productivity, and people expect to be able to use their phones in all environments without sacrificing audio quality. Jawbone's patented NoiseAssassin™ technology is unique in its ability to separate speech from ambient noise with remarkable precision. Jawbone's NoiseAssassin is able to achieve this while other headsets cannot due to:

Patented VAS:
Jawbone's Voice Activity Sensor (VAS) is able to detect very accurately when the person is talking and capture the frequencies of his or her speech even in the presence of noise.

Advanced DSP Algorithms:
The NoiseAssassin algorithms were developed over a number of years for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

These required powerful noise suppression algorithms for use in the most extreme acoustic noise environments including battlefields and helicopters. The algorithms use Jawbone's two microphones and the VAS to accurately model the noise environment.

Jawbone detects when and how a person is speaking, models the noise, and aggressively eliminates it.

Conventional "noise eliminating" headsets do not have the VAS and can only estimate when speech is occurring with software-based Voice Activation Detection (VAD) systems. For these systems to work, the speech must be significantly louder or spectrally different from the noise. These systems fail in loud environments or in the presence of other people's speech. Furthermore, because they can't accurately identify the speech signals, they distort the speech in the process of attempting to eliminate the noise. The result of this distortion is a significant degradation in intelligibility and quality in order to achieve a perceptual reduction in noise.

THE DESIGN



The New Jawbone is the next step in the integration of best in class noise elimination technology with personal design that is both humanistic and minimal.

"The Jawbone strategy we set-out to follow three years ago has proven that products that live on our face need to be designed differently than typical technology wares; we regard them as personal accessories or even jewelry, and, as such, believe they need to be a complete departure from the gadgetry of the mobile and headset industry."Yves Behar, Chief Designer and CCO of Aliph

In the tradition of bringing together beauty and science, the new Jawbone is a miracle of miniaturization and 50% smaller than the original award-winning Jawbone. Every effort has been made to contain best in class noise elimination technology in the most unassuming, yet richly detailed product.

No Visible Buttons
The "invisible button" policy at Jawbone accomplishes a clutter-free look. Touch-surface technology allows the user to operate switches by lightly pressing the outside shield.

Premium Materials
Constructed with ultra-smooth medical-grade plastic, the new Jawbone also comes with optional fine leather earloops.

The Experience
Comprised of an outer shield and inner surface, the new Jawbone experience is two-fold. The outer shield, curved and rectilinear to follow the face, is lightly textured in a sound-reflective progressive relief, a three-dimensional texture visually representative of noise abatement surfaces. This unique surface becomes animated as light creates highlights and shadows when worn. The inner surface, the one touching the face and creating contact with the Voice Activity Sensor, is gently curved to be ergonomic and comfortable on the skin.

OK - now we know how they did it and what they were thinking - so.....On to the review!




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