Who would’ve thought that a man’s failed search for pink-colored headphones would result in one of the most influential wireless headphone brands in the world? Well, if you asked the founders of Happy Plugs, there could be no other explanation. A rising leader in the consumer electronics industry, the Stockholm-based Happy Plugs has brought itself to the forefront of the fashion tech industry with their innovation lab, Yevo Labs, which offers stylish, high-quality wireless headphones throughout 10,000 retailers in 70 countries worldwide. NXP had the pleasure of sitting down with Andreas Vural, Founder of YEVO Labs, to discuss their brand, their mission, and how NXP’s MiGLO NFMI technology made their influential wireless earbuds possible.
A: The company was born at the end of 2011 when I was looking for a pair of pink headphones for my girlfriend. When I didn’t have any luck, I took the matter into my own hands – and painted a pair of headphones myself. And she loved them! That made me realize there was a gap in the market, and there was room for well designed, affordable headphones that went beyond functionality. From this belief, the brand Happy Plugs was born. Soon after, the YEVO Labs brand was added to the family.
Q: How did YEVO Labs join the family, and what made you decide to do something separate from Happy Plugs?
A: Initially, the YEVO 1 was meant to be a Happy Plugs product. During the R&D phase, we soon realized that to create a really good product we really needed to tell another story than what we do with Happy Plugs. While Happy Plugs and YEVO share a lot of design and fashion-focused DNA – the price point and customer are different.
A: We discovered the MiGLO NFMI (Near Field Magnetic Induction) technology very early in the R&D process for the YEVO 1 when bluetooth technology couldn‘t meet our expectations. The Bluetooth signal can’t transfer through water, and the human body mainly consists of water.
Q: How do YEVO earbuds make a change in everyday life, and what advantages do they provide for headphone users?
A: YEVO is the next generation of headphones. Hence the name: Your EVOlution. The contemporary YEVO 1 design is engineered without any wires and with the best sound quality. They are full of cutting-edge audio technology, including MiGLO, so that you can push your headphone experience to the next level. And for us, how headphones look is just as important as the performance. So, we’ve designed them to look as good as possible while being packed with the best technology.
A: One of the big advantages is that MiGLO uses far less power than Bluetooth, and sends voice and music with a much more secure and flawless signal through water, which is vital to making sound efficient headphones.
Q: You mentioned wanting to make headphones that look good. How does MiGLO help facilitate that goal?
A: Thanks to the support of the great team at NXP and MiGLO technology, we could dream bigger than we ever could have hoped to during the design process. We are big dreamers, but in this case, 1+1 really turned in to 11.
Q: Yevo Labs is collaborating with a charity organization that created the world’s most valuable metal, Humanium. What are you hoping to achieve by teaming up?
A: The YEVO 1 is the first product crafted out of illegal fire arms. By introducing Humanium Metal – a commodity for peace – into the YEVO 1, we will help create new sources of funding for victims and projects aiming to rebuild conflict-torn societies affected by illegal weapon violence. This collaboration is bigger than headphones. It’s part of a global movement that removes illegal firearms from the streets and recycles them into a material that helps move us towards a more peaceful future, all while giving back to those affected by violent crime.
Q: So what does the future look like for Yevo Labs? How do you see NFMI and applications like yours evolving over time?
A: We’re working on a smarter version of the second generation YEVO – The YEVO 2. We’re big dreamers, and we basically see headphones as small computers for your ears. Imagine how much computers have changed over the last 10 years – they are smaller, smarter and more powerful. Then think about headphones, which haven’t changed at all since they were first introduced in 1910. Merge these two together and you have something extraordinary.
Find out more about NXP’s MiGLO technology, and YEVO Labs’ wireless hearables below: