When it comes to portability, most of us would agree that less is more, but optimal size is a function of both ergonomics and performance quality. With a slide-on design, Zooka seems to merge with the device, providing subtle augmentation where comparable devices easily become excess clutter.
The body of the Zooka is made from medical-grade silicone, giving it flexibility as a grip or rigidity as a stand. Zooka can become a side grip for your hand for a video chat with family, or a stand that props up your iPad for a conference call from the road, a movie at home, or an expo display at the office.
Since its release in March 2012, Zooka has found users among a younger tech-savvy crowd (especially music lovers), as well as an older generation who might otherwise have trouble hearing clearly on increasingly smaller audio devices (whose capacity for great sound quality shrinks right along with them).
Zooka’s dual 30-mm speakers provide an omni-directional sound to fill any room. Though compatible with any Bluetooth device, and flexible enough to slide on to most of them, Zooka was designed specifically for the Apple iPad. Zooka transmits from devices within a 30-foot range, and runs on a lithium-ion battery charged through a micro-USB port.
The founding team of Zooka’s creator, Carbon Audio, has a mix of talent and experience as designers, former audio company executives, and lawyers. CEO Mark Schneider served as vice president and general manager of Logitech’s Audio Business Group, when it was the worldwide leader in consumer speakers and personal audio equipment. Carbon Audio plans to debut its second audio product sometime this summer.
Carbon Audio was a showcased startup at our Tech Cocktail SXSW mixer.
Guest author Kaitlynn Hendricks is a systems builder and a solution-focused, broad-scale economist. She works as a business developer in Washington, DC, where she spends her days pursuing, supporting, and telling stories about ventures in development and stewardship of globally conscious, locally focused networks of human, physical, and liquid capital. She enjoys timeless and occasionally avant-garde fashion, reading things that are just a little bit too complicated to really understand, relentlessly challenging the status quo, and exploring the city on her vespa. You can follow her on Twitter @sophistikaty.