Las Vegas — Diversification is the name of Monster’s game at this year’s International CES, as it continues down its multi-faceted path in consumer electronics.
Noted company founder and “head monster” Noel Lee, who attended yesterday’s International CES press conference via video rather than on his trademark Segway because of a recent surgery: “Today, in this Internet of Things, you can’t do it alone, and that’s our mantra.”
Neal Bobrick, Monster president, said the company is making a push toward seeking out entrepreneurs in order to provide them with a platform to bring their ideas to market. Actor Nick Cannon, who has partnered with Monster since 2011 for its NCredible headphones line, is joining this effort for both new products and content. “Last year we talked about creating content, and we’ve definitely succeeded,” said Cannon at the press conference. “We’ve already taking this idea of innovation and creativity and bringing it to television,” he adding, hinting toward an upcoming TV show known as “Make It Monster.”
As is now CES tradition for Monster, the company trotted out a cadre of celebrities, including Cannon, Shaquille O’Neal and U.S. Paralympic champion Blake Leeper.
Although its current motto is “More Than Just a Headphones Company,” new headphones were certainly given plenty of attention. This included its first wireless in-ear iSport models: the iSport Bluetooth Wireless and iSport Bluetooth Wireless Super Slim ($129 and $149 suggested retails, respectively). The water-resistant Super Slim is designed to be worn beneath a helmet or goggles and can be fully submerged.
Monster is adding Bluetooth headphones with active noise canceling to its DNA line (the DNA Pro 2.0 Active Bluetooth with ANC, $399) and showing off its new DNA 2.0 Pro flagship headphones, both accompanied by the free Pure Monster Sound Experience interactive app. The app features customized music tuning profiles meant to enhance the song being played.
It is also expanding its Adidas partnership with the Performance line of headphones, this one geared toward athletes. Five in-ear models make up the line, with prices ranging from $49.95 to $149.
With a heavy nod toward its roots — and one toward the 4K video movement — Monster is renewing its focus on A/V accessories. New cables were previewed with connection indicator lights, as well as fiber optic cables. Three new families of power and surge protection: Gold, Platinum and Black Platinum.
Like last year, Shaquille O’Neal came on stage in support of the SuperStar portable Bluetooth speaker line. The newest model, the waterproof SuperStar BackFloat ($169), will come in two colors and features built-in mics for speakerphone capabilities.