23 thoughts on “Khosla Ventures invests $5M in Jawbone”

  1. If they are selling so many units why do they need to raise money? Is this a case of “We lose money on every sale but make it up in volume”?

  2. @The Growler
    “We lose money on every sale but make it up in volume”

    I doubt it. This is probably more a case of the time required to recoup production and R&D costs. Cash flow is the number one nagging problem for businesses (See SunRocket), and venture capital is one way to get a nice influx of a large cash sum. I would guess they are needing to invest more money in production or distribution channels to keep up with the high demand for their product.

  3. They need money to pay their contract manufacturers for larger quantities to be made and sales, support, and engineering staff to expand the brand. Even a profitable company needs working capital and unless the owners are rich or have lots of equity to secure bank funding with then the venture funding markets will be the source of this cash.

    Imagine that you wanted to sell me something and you will eventually make a profit on the sale but in order to sell it to me you need to spend millions of dollars with your suppliers to obtain the things you are selling me. You need the cash to cover your expenses until I pay you. And if you expect to maintain the same level of production you will need to keep that amount of money floating with suppliers.

    If you build your business slowly you can generally skim this cash from your existing profits but when your growth outstrips your internal capital you need to either slow down or fund the growth.

  4. I don’t have the product, but a friend of mine does and claims that it’s similar to other blue tooth devices that don’t stay put in the ear well enough. I’ve had this problem with my bluetooth as well…it seems that at times even the slightest movement of my head, chewing gum even, will cause it to fall out. I don’t understand why someone doesn’t copy my Sony earphones that I use with my iPod while I’m jogging. I could do summersaults and they wouldn’t come out of my ear because of the way they’re designed. Blue Tooth makers should take a lesson from headphone manufacturers in this realm.

  5. I bought a jawbone headset along with my iPhone and it seems ok. The packaging and overall design are great, definitely. ‘Apple-like’ is apt.

    I’ve never used a bluetooth headset previously but I’ve not been very wowed by the sound quality on my Jawbone. It seems kinda tinny and hollow. That might just be an aspect of bluetooth audio that I have to get used to, though.

  6. I just ordered one 3 days ago. I’ve read some good reviews about it. I’ve been using a Motorola headset and also a Plantronics Discovery. Both have been pretty disappointing. People complain all day long about how they can’t hear me, lots of static, etc. My mobile is my primary phone for work so I’m hoping this will work as advertised ;-).

  7. I immediately signed up on the waiting list when I heard the Bluetooth version was coming. I have been a headset junkie of long standing from the original corded Plantronics headsets and then Plantronics’ Bluetooth series starting from the 510, 640, and 655.

    The Jawbone Bluetooth radio beats the Plantronics radios I have experienced hands down. Very fast pairing with my Treo 700p. The Plantronics radios have a noticeable latency. I have also had no problem paring the headset to my Thinkpad allowing me to use this for my Skype and Gizmo Project calls.

    I agree with the comments that like the other headsets that rely on having a good fit in your ear to anchor the device there are stability and comfort issues, but no more than the Plantronics 6XX series.

    I think Aliph can improve their product with some more engineering effort into the earpiece. My primary problem is that I cannot make a good seal and even at the highest volume level on both phone and headset I still have difficult hearing the other person making the terrific noise cancellation technology somewhat moot. I would happily pay for new earpieces or a new version of the headset (so long as the charger does not change as I have already bought extra chargers) that properly addresses this.

  8. The Jawbone is a great product – I’ve tried the Plantronics, the Motorola and the Bang and Olufson bluetooth headset and the Jawbone is much better. I’ve even made conference calls from the floor of a trade show without any problems for the person I was talking too.

    Congrats to Rahman and Patrick and the rest of the team.

    @ Growler – Mike and Czares are right. In a manufacturing business you’ve often got to pay your suppliers before you get paid by your customers, so growth creates a cash flow gap.

  9. I have been using the Bluetooth Jawbone with a Blackberry 8800 for a couple of months, and it is the best cellular headset (wired or wireless) that I’ve ever used by far. Amazing noise cancellation, I can speak freely in locations impossible any other way even directly into the phone, and echo issues are very, very rare (once or twice that I can remember), and I use the device several hours a day.

  10. My experience is you have to have Jawbone set perfectly on your cheek in order to have it work right. It is OK.

    It is no good in a windy enviornment. I am going back to my old standby, the Plantronics 510 with Windsmart and noise canceling. It is more comfortable than the Jawbone. I use a Samsung 610 on Sprints network….

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