It was evening and almost time to go to the cinema to watch Padmavat. Specky, my wife, asked, ‘Is there any way we can listen to some sort of a synopsis of this movie? I mean, we hardly have enough time to sit and read reviews.’
‘Yes, of course,’ I said, ‘Google on the mobile is now smarter than you can imagine.’ And saying this I swiped out my smartphone and a tap was enough to waken the VPA or the virtual personal assistant there. I said, ‘Tell me the story of Padmavat…’ and before I could even raise my head and smile at my tech savvy move, the audio from my mobile began reading out a synopsis of the movie.
My smile, however, was short-lived. A loudspeaker outside started blaring out some Bollywood song pretending to be a bhajan, a plane decided to fly past, and the mason working in the apartment a level below had just emerged from his bidi-break and began his hammering at a pace that didn’t look like slowing. The result was that we heard nothing. Yes, nothing.
‘Technology is of no use,’ wailed Specky. This was when I told her that we should have had the Bose QC 35 II.
‘Ok. And how would a headphone have helped?’
I had been waiting for this opportunity. You know it isn’t easy to sell technology buying concepts to spouses as they would always have something far more important to buy. My pleas for a treadmill, a wide-angle lens for my DSLR, a set of walkie-talkie, a Wacom pen-tablet, and even a drone had been easily overtaken and over-powered by the boring necessities around the home like a dish-washer and a double-bed for the guest room. And so I was not going to lose this opportunity to pitch for the newest Bose marvel, the QC 35 II.
So I simply spoke my heart out in rhymes that I was making up as I was speaking:
BoVo is the new friend we need today
And all these noises will be gone
This headphone does all that you say
And new conversations will be born
‘Don’t speak in riddles,’ she said, ‘what is BoVo?’
‘Ah! BoVo is short for Bose plus Voice,’ I said, ‘This means you can communicate with the world through a headphone. You can play music, receive texts, manage daily tasks, and get all your queries answered. One push of the Action button does it all. All in the comfort of a world-class noise cancelling technology that imbues a focus to whatever it is that you are listening to. No noise. No blah-blah from the outside world, so to say. Our past experiences are all about headphones being rather passive devices dependent upon other technologies to make them sound impressive.’
‘Sounds interesting. But we’re getting late for the movie.’
So I told her again that the QC 35 II wasn’t just any headphone. It has Google VPA integrated into it. ‘But this isn’t all,’ I went on, risking entering a cinema after the trailers were over, ‘this device cancels outside noise with an opposing signal and you can choose the level of cancellation. I think this is going to be pretty useful when you’re reading a book and I am watching news on the television.’ I knew that the opposite is more likely and that I would be reading a book and she’d be watching a movie as it generally happens… but then you know how it goes when you’re pitching for your favourite headphone. After all, all is fair in love and sales pitches!
So yes, we did leave for the cinema but something really strange happened during the interval. Specky turned to me and asked, ‘I know these smart devices use Bluetooth. But what if I am already using Bluetooth to transfer files? And if I want to hear clear and noise-free music as well? And what if I have an older generation mobile that doesn’t have Bluetooth?’
You know what… wives are the best people to make you think and I guess the researchers at Bose must have had extensive consultations with wives. This is why they have an answer to this as well. I said, ‘The headphone comes with an audio cable for times when you’re in a situation like the one you’ve described and for times when a person has a device that doesn’t have a functional Bluetooth. So yes, you’re simply wired during such moments but the pleasure comes to you unrestricted.’
‘By the way,’ I added, ‘these headphones have a super-fast 15-minute charge to give an additional 2.5 hours once the 20 hours of charge are done with. And if you are still going on with your marathon listening spree, you have the option of using the cable if charging isn’t possible. The Bose headphones probably believe in never quitting which makes sort of commandos in their segment, doesn’t it?’
‘Yes, I believe so.’
I added that if one is on marathon listening sprees, one wouldn’t obviously want discomfort to either the ear-drums or nor skin. The device has a soft material all over that is used in yachts and high-end automobiles. This is called Alcantara® and the ear cushions are manufactured from synthetic protein leather that gives it an enviable aura. Specky was all ears to this info and said, ‘One last question. I have a tendency to drop things. How long will the headphones survive in my hands?’
‘Well, well, well,’ I said with a smile, ‘not just you, even I prefer devices made from impact-resistant materials… and these headphones are made from glass filled nylon and corrosion resistant stainless steel, which means they’re engineered to survive life on the go.’
So there we were inside a cinema watching concepts from the past come alive in a rather contemporary perspective and carrying on a conversation about a future acquisition by filling in the blanks with incidents from the past. The way the tenses merged seamless surprised me but the best was when in flawless grammar, Specky said, ‘I guess it is time we had one of these headphones.’
‘Sold!’ flashed a silent word in my heart!
02 February 2018