The Sugr Cube is one of the most unique, fun and interactive wireless speakers we have seen in a while. It can do it all, from controlling music via gestures to easily sharing songs with others, but what is it that went behind the making of this unconventional speaker?
It sure was more than engineering and sound quality, which the unit definitely has a lot of too. We went behind the scenes with the Sugr team to get some sweet hands-on time and a deeper look into this Kickstarter project, which is moving towards success real quick.
Sean Song (image on the right) and Louis Han have been working together for 10 years. They have collaborated in multiple companies, including Microsoft, where they were colleagues for a significant period of time. It’s clear their chemistry as an engineering team fits like puzzle pieces, as do their areas of expertise. Sean Song takes care of the software side of things, while Louis Han is the hardware engineer.
Interestingly enough, their experience in the field is all related to multimedia. These guys have been working on audio/video products from the get-go, including a DVD player, an MP3/MP4 player and a TV box. Their love for music led them to where they are now – Sugr
With such a long history and big names on their resumes, you know right off the bat their products won’t be your mundane, passing fads you tend to see in Kickstarter.
The Sugr Cube concept
We had a long conversation with Sean and Louis. The team definitely expressed their enthusiasm for new technologies, which are stuffing more features into smaller packages and freeing consumers from past hassles.
There is a clear evolution of products. From the boombox to the Walkman, then the iPod and iPhone. The team believes Sugr is truly the next step – a connected speaker that offers true portability, social features and improved performance.
The speaker doesn’t even require a smartphone to play music. It can operate on its own after being set up. It simply harvests the power of WiFi to connect to streaming services, as well as your smartphone.
The idea here is to get rid of the software apps, and turn Sugr into some form of physical app, if you will. This is why the team decided to go with a design that mimics the current app design trend. The speaker has a flat, iconic style we can all recognize.
Likewise, its functions imitate those of an app. You use gestures like tapping, tap & hold and swiping. Because we already know these commands, it makes the device very intuitive to use.
This is a concept the company refrained from commenting in the Kickstarter campaign, as they thought it would be complicated to explain in english… or to explain, period.
Sugr Cube’s unique features
So we already know all about the Sugr Cube, right? We told you all about it in our news coverage, yesterday. We are not going to go through all of it again, but we do have some very neat features to show you. This is also one of the things that makes the Sugr Cube a very unique and seamless speaker to operate.
For starters, let’s talk about the design. This square design is not just to make the device look like an app or icon, this is actually a design style high-end speaker manufacturers usually take on for their biggest and baddest products. It transmits sound more efficiently, creates a natural base and manages to save battery life.
Another great thing about the Sugr Cube is its pairing solution. Because this speaker works via WiFi only and has no bluetooth, it needs another method for connection. With such devices, one would usually connect to the device via WiFi, give it the credentials and then disconnect and let the device tap into the WiFi network.
Sugr does this a bit differently and more intuitively. After you give the app your router’s username and password, the Sugr Cube can encode the information and transmit it via sound. The Sugr Cube will then listen to the encoded message and translate it in order to connect to Wifi. Pretty simple!
The feature is said to be under development, but it had no issues during our tests.
A lot of thought went into making the Sugr Cube, which is why it picked up our interest. We simply had to check it out, as should you! The KickStarter page has all the details, and you can get yourself one of these by pledging as low as $119. Will you be getting yourself one? I think I just might.