“For us it’s a dream of a life untethered, free from language barriers.”
Thanks to a new piece of technology, we may be headed towards a time where we don’t have to resort to awkward hand gestures when attempting to communicate with someone who doesn’t speak the same language.
Created by startup Waverly Labs, the “smart” earpiece is reportedly the world’s first gadget that can translate between two users speaking different languages in real-time — the creators say it’s “intended for the Traveller, International Professional and Digital Nomad.”
The earpiece, dubbed the Pilot, is shaped similar to regular earbuds, but it’s wireless and can do its job even without internet connection. Pretty handy if you find yourself lost in a city without WiFi connection, or frantically trying to figure out which subway stop to get off at.
The Pilot is expected to launch next week on Indiegogo (May 15), and for now, the product comes with English, Spanish, French, and Italian. However, Waverly Labs says that other languages are on the way, including Arabic, Hindi, East Asian, and Slavic languages.
SEE ALSO: Sony is Developing Contact Lenses That Can Take Pictures and Record Video With the Blink of an Eye
As of now, not many details are out on how the wearable tech works, other than its use of “translation technology” embedded in the app. The first generation of the device only works when speaking to another person who also has a Pilot earbud, but the company says that future versions will be able to translate from any surrounding spoken source.
The full retail price for the Pilot is expected to be between $249 and $299, but the early bird special on Indiegogo will start at $129. The purchase will come with two earpieces in each pack, and additional languages will be available via downloadable language packs.
“Being lost in translation has happened to everyone while traveling, even us, and that’s exactly how the idea was born,” the creators write in their media kit. “For us it’s a dream of a life untethered, free from language barriers.”
Find out more in the Pilot promo video below.
Read next: This 360-Degree Camera Could Become the GoPro of Virtual Reality