Digital health and wearables took meaningful leaps forward in 2014, in both consumer awareness and product availability, and SMS Audio partner and president Brian Nohe rocketed his company to the front of the line when it announced a partnership with Intel for biometric headphones.
The BioSport in-ear headphones, which officially became available this month for a $149 suggested retail, mark a significant marriage between health and headphones, the likes of which has yet to be seen from a major, mainstream audio manufacturer. And while another headphones company took up most of the media’s ink when it came to its own marriage with Apple, Nohe was neither worried nor threatened by the news when he spoke with TWICE over the summer.
“People like to compare us to Beats, and in some ways that’s very flattering to be compared to Beats,” he said. “They did a wonderful job of developing a company, but we’re not trying to duplicate. We have our own vision and strategy, and we will win it in our time and our own way.”
Nohe, who spent more than 20 years with Gillette in a variety of management positions, has helped SMS Audio achieve success beyond “just another celebrity project” status by forming partnerships in various areas, including licensing deals with Lucasfilms and Disney.
Noted Nohe in a March piece he penned for Entrepreneur as advice for start-ups: “It’s not about the pace — it’s about the race. You don’t always have to be fast, but you have to be intelligent enough to know your position in the category and how to work intelligently within the marketplace.”