Waverly Labs is erasing language barriers with its translation headset

Waverly Labs' Ambassador is a translation wearable that could change the world.
Image: Waverly Labs

CES 2020 will host a wide variety of innovative thinkers, norm-defying brands, and promising startups. As such, the event will give consumers an early look at the groundbreaking tech products that will jumpstart the trends of the 2020s. One such device is Waverly Labs’ Ambassador, an artificial intelligence-enhanced translation headset.

Capable of performing professional-grade live speech interpretation, the device has the potential to revolutionize international tourism, education, and commerce.

How Ambassador Works

Waverley Labs’ game-changing translation solution has two parts—a single earbud and an accompanying mobile application. Ambassador pairs with the user’s smartphone via Bluetooth to connect the device to the startup’s cloud-based neural network. Afterward, the headset can perform three distinctive live translation functions.

Ambassador’s Listen mode uses a built-in microphone array and voice recognition algorithms to capture the speech of anyone within an 8-foot radius. The wearable then uploads the recorded audio and can translate it into one of 20 languages and 42 dialects. The interpreted speech is played back in the user’s native language through the earbud.

Meanwhile, Ambassador’s Lecture mode allows for inverted interpretive functionality. When active, it translates a user’s speech into a different language that can be broadcast through their smartphone or a Bluetooth-enabled speaker.

Lastly, the artificial intelligence-enhanced interpreter’s Converse mode facilitates communication between people who speak different languages. To use it, two to four users pair their Ambassadors to one smartphone. The networked earbuds then record and translate the participants’ conversation in real-time.

In other words, Ambassador is a real-world version of the universal translators from “Star Trek.”

How Ambassador Can Change the World

Although several large corporations and startups have produced translation hardware in the past, Waverly’s Ambassador has legitimate world-changing potential.

For one, the startup has been producing acclaimed electronic interpreters since 2014. Waverly’s engineers, developers, and language experts worked together to build the Pilot smart earbuds. The groundbreaking device provided real-time speech translation in 15 languages and 42 dialects and garnered the company worldwide press coverage.

Ultimately, the company made $5 million pre-selling Pilot to over 35,000 consumers worldwide.

After that initial success, Waverley worked to make its hardware and software more robust and functional. As a result, the company produced Ambassador, a wearable capable of providing precise, professional-grade translation.

The startup has developed affordable tools that erase the language barrier for entrepreneurs, educators, managers, and healthcare professionals worldwide. Waverly’s technology also allows families, friends, and work colleagues to have meaningful conversations unhampered by linguistic differences.

Furthermore, the company’s electronic interpreters can lessen the anxiety that tourists feel when visiting exotic locales.

Currently, Waverly is taking pre-orders for Ambassador, a CES 2020 Innovation Award Honoree, via Indigogo. For $119, consumers can purchase two translator earbuds, a carrying case, and a USB charging set that will be ready for delivery in March 2020. Notably, the startup’s newest product isn’t just vaporware. Electronics giant Arrow has verified that Ambassador is feasible for large-scale manufacturing.

Waverly Labs and many other innovative companies will be showcasing their products at CES 2020 from January 7-10.