Cup o’ Music!



Ai means love in the Japanese language. In english, AI stands for artificial intelligence. Wth this in mind, the thoughtfully designed Plus Minus Zero speaker aims to bring individuals closer.

For centuries, the cup has always been at the center of communication. Whether it’s over hot coffee or a cold beer, we talk and share our emotions with each other over the cup! The cup also acts as a faux phone for kids to communicate during playtime. This sentiment drove the familiar form of the device which is equally playful, functional, and intuitive to use!

Designer: Steve Bae


Inspired from the Movie ‘Her’

From the movie ‘Her’ Theodore and Samantha communicates very deeply, showing the possibilities of sympathy between man and machine. This was very inspiring and I thought the communication between an AI and human should be in this kind of way. I tried to find some link to make the communication flow in a very human-like way.


Metaphor: Cup

The cup acted as a communication device for every children, which most people sympathy in the memories of their childhood. I took motive from the essence of a cup as a communication between human individuals.


Shape Study on Plus Minus Zero

Japanese design brand Plus Minus Zero’s design focuses on human nature and how a product should be used in our daily lives. I focused on the proportions and the design languages that come from the simplicity of the design and tried to blend them in to his own.



Designed with Simplicity

It was a big challenge to refine a paper cup shape product with details. While finding proportions of the whole product and seeking for the components I could add details to, I found the simplicity for this project.



Easy Volume Control

The Ai was designed with a volume jog dial at its bottom for easy control, With in the simple design language i wanted to make some difference through pattern surfaces that smoothly fades away like a gradient.



Concave Designs

To maximize the traits of a cup, the product was designed in a concave shape. Also, the concave keeps the sound in direction, and at the same time, the mic can catch exact orders from the user. The indicator interacts with the user when a command is input.



Expanding Metaphor: Cup Sleeve

To maximize the essence traits of the cup, I designed an accessory which took metaphor from a cup sleeve. The cup sleeve accessory can give expansion for the usage of the product.




Slip on, Lay down, Take anywhere

The sleeve design provide variety of user scenarios, which prevents Ai from rolling and at the same time, you can carry Ai easily with the translucent straps.