Audio industry veterans Mark Friedman and Hiro Ogura, who have teamed this year to start VOIZ, are bringing out the AiRadio line, which make its formal debut at CES. These tabletop ‘smart radios,’ says the company, combine the latest audio and voice-control technologies. The look is premium, with retro futuristic styling.
AiRadio, says the company, is the first “Radio You Can Talk To” – and the second product line born from the collaboration of Friedman, former Onkyo and Harman executive, and Ogura, formerly of Emerson Radio; AiRadio follows the introduction of the VOIZ Dot Pair, which turns any outlet into an attractive station for the Amazon Echo Dot 2.
Ogura says that AiRadio with built-in Alexa is the first product of its kind – a voice-controlled smart radio that combines premium components, precise engineering and luxury styling to deliver a high-fidelity streaming audio experience.
According to Friedman, VOIZ will showcase three AiRadio models at CES 2019, each featuring bamboo cabinet exteriors, removable cloth grills, high-performance 3-inch speakers with oversized neodymium magnets, a high-performance omnidirectional microphone, a custom-tuned Digital Signal Processor (DSP), a Class-D digital amplifier, and built-in Alexa voice control.
The vertically oriented AiRadio Poco (VR-60) and horizontally oriented AiRadio Uno (VR-70) are single-speaker mono units that offer an output for an optional second AiRadio speaker (VR-62 and VR-72, respectively) to deliver enhanced stereo sound. The AiRadio Duo (VR-80) doubles the power and performance with two 3-inch speakers and a two-channel amplifier to deliver audiophile-quality stereo sound from a single unit.
Each model delivers streaming audio from sources including Amazon, Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, TuneIn and more through a voice-controlled interface. “Unlike commodity smart speakers that often focus on being as low-cost as possible,” says Friedman, “our AiRadio series of smart radios is specifically designed with premium components, finishes and technologies to deliver a high-fidelity listening experience with a classic radio aesthetic that recalls the heyday of over-the-air broadcasts.”