Sony is not just a company known for their PlayStation gaming offerings or their audio equipment, and despite the fact that their smartphone business isn't doing all that well, there's plenty Sony has to shout about. In the last couple of years, we've been seeing glimpses of a stranger Sony that's willing to experiment and try new things, which is great to see, but whether or not Sony has the vision to turn these concepts and crazy ideas into sellable products remains to be seen. This week, the Japanese firm is unveiling their new "Future Lab" project, which will allow the outside world to help give Sony feedback on what needs to be improved or changed. It's essentially a transparency program, and the first concept from the project will be unveiled soon, during SXSW.
Right now, this new project is simply known as "N" and all we can tell from the below teaser is that it's going to be some sort of wearable device. It appears as though "N" is to be something to do with music or radio, and instead of being another set of earbuds or tiny wireless ear bud – like the recently announced Xperia Ear – "N" won't require people to put anything inside of their ear. In the teaser, a device can be seen resting around someone's neck, as well as responding to voice commands. It's possible that this sort of wearable device will be using bone conduction to make itself heard, but those device generally require something attached near the ear, not resting around the neck.
"N" will be unveiled during Texas' SWSW conference, scheduled to start soon on March 12th. Sony seems set on using different letters to denote different concept products, and considering the firm is looking for feedback, we'll no doubt hear more during the initial unveiling later this month. Regardless, there's a lot to look forward to where the "Future Lab" project is concerned. Just last month we saw Sony unveil some Xperia concepts such as the Xperia Eye and a funky projector to go with it. Some of the best ideas are often fuelled by user feedback, and if Sony is looking for a new hit, then asking the people what they want doesn't seem like a bad idea at all.