Nearly two weeks ago, Carl Pei formally launched his new company Nothing. The venture is backed by a list of well-known investors including iPod inventor Tony Fadell, Reddit CEO Steve Huffman and Twitch co-founder Kevin Lin. In a new interview with Bloomberg Carl Pei confirmed Alphabet’s VC capital investment arm Google Ventures (GV) backed $15 million of “Series A” funding into his new company.
As the new firm had no products to even tease alongside it, that name seemed appropriate enough. Now, however, the executive has revealed plans for not just one product, but a whole ecosystem of them.
Pei also specified that Nothing’s first product is likely to be a pair of TWS earbuds, thereby confirming earlier rumors that his new brand would do something audio-related. However, speaking in an interview with Bloomberg, he also emphasized that it intends to branch into many other categories over time.
The rapidly-expanding TWS market may indeed have space for new Nothing entries; then again, they may have a hard time competing with the market leader Apple. Pei apparenly plans to imbue his potential AirPod rivals with Nothing’s advertised focus on innovative, ground-up-designed devices that offer a “seamless” digital experience.
This approach, however, vague, has won Pei and Nothing a US$7 million round of investment from various private entities. It has subsequently held another round of Series A funding, which has been snapped up in its entirely by GV (Alphabet’s venture-capital arm) to the tune of $15 million.
This decision, according to GV’s General Partner Tom Hulme, is due to the “vision for smart devices” presented by Pei in conjunction with Nothing, which, apparently, is “compelling“.
Wireless earbuds have stormed the consumer electronics market in 2020. In fact, they, along with wristwear, led the entire wearable segment‘s shipments with a whopping 93% of the total share. The list includes giants like Apple, Samsung, Xiaomi, and even realme making it inside the top-10.
Hence, it would be a bang of a start for Carl Pei to compete with companies( including his ex-company OnePlus) in a segment that’s already blooming entering into 2021. That said, we will have to wait and see if the company manages to pull the audience towards it with its first product.