LIFESTYLE - INTERVIEW
Saturday, August 18, 2018
LIFESTYLE - INTERVIEW
by Mehmet Kaplan
Flat Core Speaker Technology was developed by Brian Youngil Cho and his father, LH Cho. FCS technology gave Brian Youngil Cho a vision and a goal. Resonado was founded by four University of Notre Dame students: Brian Youngil Cho, Peter Moeckel, Erikc Perez-Perez and Christian Femrite. They decided to offer this technology to the market with products they would develop. On the B2B side, Resonado provides customized speakers to their corporate clients. And also with Bluepot: Powerbank + Speaker and Mini-O: Stereo Bluetooth Speaker, Resonado offers advantages of FCS Technology to the consumers. In order to learn more about Flat Core Speaker Technology, I talked to Brian Youngil Cho, Founder and CEO of Resonado.
Brian, before start to talking about Resonado, could you tell us about your educational background and industry experiences?
I am actually a rising senior at the University of Notre Dame majoring in both Finance and Applied Mathematics. I have been involved in the startup world since I was very young, thanks to my dad who is a successful serial entrepreneur with 3 exits. I have experience in startup financing and been working on this Flat Core Speaker Technology (FCS Technology) for the past several years alongside my father, who is the original inventor of the technology and our current CTO.
How did you meet with Peter, Erikc, and Christian? Who are Peter Moeckel, Erikc Pérez-Pérez, and Christian Femrite?
Resonado was founded by four University of Notre Dame students: Peter Moeckel, Erikc Perez-Perez, Christian Femrite, and myself. We all met at Notre Dame.
Could you tell us about FCS technology and its history? Who is Mr. LH Cho?
The FCS technology was developed by me and my father, LH Cho, who is also our CTO. The FCS technology is an architectural restructuring of the conventional speaker. With this patented FCS technology, we can provide superior audio hardware solutions to everywhere a speaker is used: phone, laptop, car, airplane, or a concert hall.. anywhere that uses the speaker can benefit from our technology.
The benefits of FCS technology are quite stalling. Our Flat Core Speakers (1) are 30% more sustainable because we use 30% less materials than the existing conventional speakers (thus cost-effective), (2) are 40% more energy efficient because we have better magnetic flux, (3) are up to 70% smaller and lighter because of our structural advantage, (4) have structural flexibility - we can mold our speakers into any share from S-shape to Z-shape, (5) completely scalable in that we can hit any frequency range from subwoofer (40Hz) to tweeter, and most importantly, (6) have acoustically superior sound quality coming from even distribution of energy and force due to a planar structure - we avoid partial vibration.
How did you come up with Resonado idea? Could you tell us about Resonado?
The FCS technology was something that my dad and I have tinkered on for a long time. The idea had its Eureka moment when we were trying to build a digital photo frame for my mom's birthday gift and had difficulty installing a speaker to play her favorite music by Sting. Since then, the technology was rapidly developed and we, 4 founders, founded Resonado to further develop the technology here in the US market (as opposed to Korea where my dad and I are originally from). We are in the process of commercializing the technology. We are currently actively raising a seed round fund and have engaged in conversation with number of large corporations for potential partnerships. We currently have a total of 14 prospective clients in our sales funnel, which include the largest global corporations.
What are the advantages of Flat Core Speaker technology?
1. Size and Weight Reduction
2. Cost Reduction
3. Energy Efficiency
4. Acoustically Superior Sound Quality
5. Structural and Design Flexibility (It can bend to have a S- or Z-shape)
6. Completely scalable (It can produce any frequency range from a subwoofer to tweeter)
How did you use it and what type of products did you create with this technology?
We achieved a structural proof of concept by developing a 3W midrange speaker. We used this 3W midrange speaker in two consumer speaker products: Bluepot and Mini-O, both of which are selling both on our website and Amazon. These products were used for market validation. For example, Bluepot was sold over 75,000 units across the countries in Asia. We are, however, essentially a B2B business. We provide customized speakers to our corporate clients. We are currently working with 14 prospective clients in multiple industries including but not limited to Consumer Electronics, Automotive, Marine, RV, Home Theatre, etc. You will see our technology being implemented in numerous applications in the forthcoming years.
Could you tell us about Bluepot and Mini-O Speaker? What are their features?
Bluepot is a dual-functioning powerbank Bluetooth speaker. Bluepot is the only portable and reliable combo product that has both 10,000mAh powerbank and 6W speakers together. Bluepot is the first product to be introduced in the market with Flat Core Speakers.
Mini-O is the world's lightest and smallest 6W Bluetooth speaker. Its unique oval shape is only possible with Flat Core Speaker Technology. Sold in pair, Mini-O provides stereo sound through a built-in TWS feature. You can connect two Mini-Os together and it will play left and right separately to give you a stereo effect.
They are both available on our website and Amazon for sales.
How many different design and tech awards did you win by your designs? Please tell us about them.
One thing I want to emphasize here is that we were picked as one of the Top Picks by TechCrunch for TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2018. The following is the remaining list of awards we have received:
TOP PICK - TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2018
HIGH POTENTIAL STARTUP AWARD - Elevate Ventures
LEADING STUDENT STARTUP AWARD - Notre Dame Idea Center
BEST STARTUP SHOWCASE AWARD - 2018 McCloskey Competition
ABC ACCELERATOR AWARD - 2018 McCloskey Competition
IRISHANGEL AWARD - 2018 McCloskey Competition
ELKHART-SOUTH BEND AWARD - 2018 McCloskey Competition
INX AWARD - 2018 McCloskey Competition
PEOPLE’S CHOICE AWARD - PitchForce by PeopleConnect
What surfaces or materials can you apply this technology? What are your plans?
One critical essence of our technology which is different from other competing technologies is that we use essentially the same types of materials as the conventional cone-shaped speaker technology. We simply use LESS amount of materials to provide superior specifications, which is achievable only with our unique structural design. Therefore, our technology is the only technology that can readily replace ALL existing speakers in the market. The application is endless. We can replace any speaker from a cell-phone to the one used in automotive, or even the one used in airplanes.
Do you have any new designs on the drawing table? What should we wait?
We have just begun developing a 30W speaker for the use in automotive and home theatre. We expect the time of completion to be in early December. Be ready for those!
Social media has become an integral part of technology. How do you use social media for Resonado? How can our readers follow Resonado?
We actively use Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and our website Blog.
How can our readers buy Resonado products? Do you have a worldwide delivery option?
Unfortunately, we only sell domestically in the US. Resonado sells directly to businesses but you can find the products that use our technology in both Amazon and our website: Bluepot and Mini-O, both of which are selling both on our website and Amazon
What are your future plans for Resonado?
We are currently developing a 30W speaker right now. It will be completed by early December. After that, we will be substantiating sales deal with our 14 corporate clients that are currently in our sales funnel.
Thank you Brian.