Rethinking speakers

Disney researches 3D-printed interactive speakers.

Ever tried to amplify the sound from your phone by cupping it…well, in a cup? Well, Disney will see your makeshift sound maker, and raise you 3D-printed interactive speakers that can take the shape of any object imaginable. It’s not a new concept to embed speakers into existing objects (think toys that talk), but the speaker, researchers found, is limited in the directionality and material its embedded in. (Think a doll that talks, that only makes noise from its mouth.) With 3D-printing and special material, Disney research wants to make the object itself a speaker. The technology was proposed by the team at Disney Research, with the hopes that  “sound … can easily be integrated into various objects at the design stage and little assembly is required.” Just think, parents could one day use a rubber duck to quack at a child when its way past their bath time, or perhaps find keys that scream out its name (we like Charlie) when it gets lost behind the sofa cushion. The possibilities for product design are endless, care to give it a try?