Waverly Labs has announced the arrival of Ambassador, a new smart earpiece interpreter that can deliver translations in 20 languages and 42 dialects.
The New York company, best known for its 2016 crowdfunding hit, Pilot, which raised over $5 million in pre-sales, has ditched the in-ear design of the predecessor, with the Ambassador instead working over the ears.
Users can still have the company's app read back text out translations in real-time, though Ambassador features an all-new ability to broadcast translations live in a group environment.
Interestingly, the new hearable - once again sold as a pair - will also be much cheaper than the $249 Pilot. When pre-sales begin on Indiegogo, the early bird price will be $99 (eventual retail price of $149), with shipments expected to roll out this November.
And though users miss out on the sleek look of the previous generation, Ambassador does hone in on the translation features that made Pilot a truly innovative hearable. There's now three modes to translate from, instead of two: Listen, Lecture and Converse.
The first will see users able to listen for a selected tongue within 8 feet of the Ambassador, automatically translating in their native language. Lecture, a new mode, broadcasts the words of a speaker to multiple people in a group setting, capturing what someone says and able to stream audio translations to a multiple smartphones. And, finally, Converse, which allows two wearers to have a two-way conversation more naturally, with each able to set the languages they want to be detected and received.
Again, like before, Waverly Labs is touting its translator as an ideal companion for travellers and friends with language barriers, though it now also appears to be leaning towards professional circles - the Lecture mode opens it up to use in the likes of teaching and conference calls, with the company also suggesting it could be used in hospitality, healthcare, law enforcement and emergency services.
It's an intriguing second step from the company. We're not expecting it to replicate the success of the first campaign, but the Ambassador does appear set up to take Waverly Labs' translation smarts to the next level. We'll be looking to test out the Ambassador over the coming months, so stay tuned for our in-depth review.