Skullcandy, the American audio-gear brand, has gained worldwide renown with its colourful range of high-fidelity headphones. The brand recently made its India debut, with the launch of a new pair of wireless, noise-cancelling headphones, called Venue, in Delhi. This power-packed gadget has once again proved that Skullcandy is aiming to become the international leader in the headphones segment. In the face of serious competition, the brand has undoubtedly managed to excel in every aspect of headphones design, whether it is the configuration or the ergonomics. The newly launched headphones, priced at Rs 18,999, are getting excellent reviews, and are being lauded for their sound quality.
Venue also offers active noise cancelling (ANC) with new options like “Monitor Mode”. This option lets you decide if you want to hear ambient noises or just want to focus on the music. The two modes can be easily swtiched between with the push of a button, which also allows users to attend phone calls or put the call on hold.
The feature that grabbed our attention is the integrated tracker called Tile. This helps users to keep track of their headphones via the Tile app on their smartphone. As announced earlier this year, you can find this app integrated in some Bose audio products as well. Who wouldn’t want some sort of security assurance for a gadget like this?
Talking about the Tile link-up with Venue headphones, Skullkandy’s director for international sales, Brian Walsh, said, “About a year-and-a-half ago, we were in touch with this company in San Francisco that made these trackers called Tile. We started talking to them about how we can integrate this with our headphones as these trackers had a battery life of only one year. We wanted to give our users this option to track their headphones because people misplace them all the time. We will try to partner with Tile on more and more products in the future.”
Venue offers a battery life of 24 hours with rapid charge technology that generates five hours of battery backup with only 10 minutes of charging. The wireless headphones can also be connected with an audio cable if the user so prefers. The Venue range is available for now in two colours—black and white. Another exciting highlight of this product is that it allows users to interact with Google Assistant or Siri on their phones.
In conversation with Guardian 20, Walsh also spoke about the Skullcandy brand and its position in the global market. He said, “Skullcandy is the original lifestyle audio company as existed before a lot of brands that exist in the market now. We have always looked after the heritage of our company, always stayed true to who we are and what we believed in and the lifestyle we associate ourselves with. I think customers who want to be a part of our world resonate with that and they can clearly see the authenticity. But the people who only look at the price and don’t look at the brand at all are a different story. So I think we are doing well, and we are going to repeat the formula in future too.”
Amlan Bhattacharya, founder and CEO, BrandEyes Distributors, the company responsible for distributing Skullcandy products in India, told us about the preferences of the average Indian buyer when it comes to audio gadgets. He said, “Indian users are quite aware of the technology of whatever it is they are using. They are always very conscious of the quality they are opting for. And accordingly, I think we are constantly achieving success. It doesn’t matter what age bracket the consumer belongs to, we are offering something for everyone.”
When asked about the extreme competition in the headphones segment, Bhattacharya answered that he doesn’t believe that anyone can compete with the high standards of brand Skullcandy. He said, “I don’t think we have competition in the market. Skullcandy has a name of its own. We are very aware of the trends that are happening in this segment and we continue to stay a little ahead of those trends.”
So what’s next in the pipeline then?
Bhattacharya replied, “The wireless space is really exciting for the consumers and for our brand too. So we are planning to expand our offerings in this segment in the future.”