Technology was supposed to make everything easier.
And yet, an abbreviated list of all the things you need to listen to music on your phone in 2018 includes wireless earbuds (since your headphone jack is gone), a charging case, an extra battery pack and a couple of USB/Lightning cords.
Oh, and backup wired headphones (with a weird dongle) for when you inevitably lose the earbuds.
Simplifying your listening habits: the Ascape AmpPack, a single phone case that houses earbuds, charging, a power bank and protective casing, available for preorder today.
AmpPack (4 images)
The AmpPack’s advantage is economy of space: while slightly bulkier than your average phone case (it increases the size of an iPhone 6 to an iPhone 7 Plus), its versatility means you won’t have to don cargo pants just to ensure you’ve got tunes and enough battery to get you through the day. The shell, with bumper pads and induction charging coils on the back, acts as both protection and a Qi-compatible hub, turning your old plug-in phone into a modern, wireless-charging device. It’ll also doubles your phone’s battery power.
At the top of the case? Two wireless, sweatproof earbuds with graphene drivers that click out easily and sound just as good as the Anker Zolo+ buds we usually use. A fully-charged case can recharge those buds 25 times, and each charge lasts three hours. In carriage, you can elect to charge the buds, the phone or both (which will increase or decrease the AmpPack’s battery accordingly).
Unlike other earbuds, these aren’t magnetic: there’s a slight notch that keeps ‘em in place. “Apple doesn’t allow magnets on form-fitting accessories,” says Ascape co-founder Paul Schrems. “The cool thing is we just got approved for a patent for making earbuds with an indent and physical lock, as well as putting the earbuds on the top edge of the phone. So no one else can make something like this so slim.”
A few other notes: the single button on each bud can skip songs and activate your preferred AI assistant, and the earbuds arrive with three different ear tips and “ear fins,” giving you 15 different fit combinations.
At launch, the AmpPack will be available for $139-$159 (future retail will be closer to $199-$249), with orders shipping in the fall. The case is compatible with the iPhone X, 6, 6s, 7, 8, 6+, 6s+, 7+ and 8+, while the earbuds alone will work with any smartphone ... and you can buy ‘em on their own. If you do that, you’ll also be able to vote on the next compatible case, which may service devices for non-Apple folk.
We know: it ain’t easy being an Android user.