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Harman, Quirky Team On ‘Headphones Of Tomorrow’

Stamford, Conn. — Harman International has teamed up with Quirky, the crowd-sourced product-development company, to jointly develop audio products with Quirky’s online community.

The partnership is the second Powered by Quirky initiative, which enables large organizations to implement Quirky’s community-driven product-development process, the companies said.

Through the partnership, Harman contended it “will amplify the speed at which innovation happens in the consumer electronics industry.”

“We have received nearly 20,000 audio and entertainment product ideas to date from our community of everyday inventors,” said Ben Kaufman, Quirky founder/CEO. The company launched in 2009.

The first joint project focuses on the “headphones of tomorrow.” Starting today through Tuesday, April 21, Quirky and Harman will accept product ideas on Quirky’s online invention platform as part of a global invention challenge. (The invention challenge video can be viewed here.)

After that, ideas will be presented to a product-evaluation panel on Wednesday, April 29, at 7 p.m. A panel of experts from Harman and Quirky, along with the Quirky community, will vote on which ideas should be become a reality. The selected headphone ideas could be developed under one of Harman’s brands. The panel will be live streamed at

GE-backed Quirky brings to market product ideas proposed by people whose ideas are then evaluated by an in-house team of designers and engineers. The team collaborates with Quirky’s online community. When a product is sold, Quirky shares revenue with every community member who had an impact on the final product.

One product that Quirky brought to market is the Wink home-automation hub, developed by wholly owned subsidiary Wink.