Tired of sorting out tangled earphone or headphone cords every time you want to take your MP3 player or iPod out for a musical walk? The innovative Y.I concept earphones employ a built-in zipper that keeps cords in order while adding some zip to your coolness quotient.
Y.I. earphones by designer Ji Woong are in the concept stage right now but the idea is so good, it's inevitable we'll be seeing it in the stores and on the streets as fast as you can zip your fly... and yes, that's a hint.
Woong's design addresses an issue that has plagued audio headphones from their earliest days: the twin cords tend to get entangled when they're being stored.
The problem became worse when modern materials like silicone plastics entered use, as earphone cords made from them seem to have a natural affinity for coiling up around one another. If there were only some way to keep this from happening, thought Woong as he toyed absently with his jacket zipper... hey, wait a minute!
Woong's Y.I. earphones are a design tour de force on a number of levels. First off, the zipper: unzip for use, zip up to store. You can also adjust the way the headphone cords hang by moving the zipper toggle up or down.
The zipper toggle itself cleverly incorporates the volume control. Twist the end to adjust your MP3 player volume and then, push the Volume Hold button to ensure you don't get blasted with sound every time you accidentally bump the toggle. (via DVice and Yanko Design)
Editor's Update: The Zippered Headphones are now available in the U.S. You can find zippered headphones on Amazon here and at other retailers.