Monster isn't averse to a partnership. Whether sports star, rock star or superstar DJ, its audio products and headphones are well known to have proliferated fashion and lifestyle ambassadors. So for Monster to partner with Chinese smartphone maker Honor might not be a complete surprise but, well, it's still a surprise.
On Tuesday 27 June, Honor unveiled its latest smartphone, the Honor 9, in Berlin, Germany. After the main event, Monster boss Noel Lee rolled onto stage - literally, on a gold plated Segway - to announce the new Honor X Monster earphones, which will be available via the Honor shop, priced €49.
What's interesting about these all-blue colour earphones is that they're entirely void of Honor branding. But rather than just being a marketing exercise the headphones are designed to work specifically with the Honor 9. When paired via the 3.5mm headphone jack, a sound profile is engaged in the phone; a profile created by Monster's chief engineer, who spent a day with Honor in China to oversee the tuning accordingly.
It's a bold move by Honor. As a brand that's perhaps not widely enough known outside of China - and, confusingly, its mother brand Huawei releases very similar consumer products in the same market sectors - the necessity to standout via the extension of other well-known and trendy brands is, indeed, a sound idea.
Especially when the products are decent. And while the Honor X Monster earphones aren't the best we've ever heard, they're a darn sight better than what you'll find in a normal phone box. For the sake of the €49 asking price, that's still a worthwhile investment for sound enhancement to bass that's well beyond what you'll hear from a standard set of out-the-box earphones.
So there we have it: Honor teaming up with Monster might not be the most original idea ever, but it's a savvy partnership - and the resulting product actually makes a lot of sense to the right buyer.