The result: Three different glowing reviews from three different writers at three major publications, Jacob said. After that, sales took off.
The company was always privately held, mostly by Bose himself. That gave him the freedom to plow all of the company's profits back into research, and enabled it to continue coming out with many firsts in its field.
The first noise-canceling headphones took $50 million and more than a decade of work, and some in the company wanted to shut down the research. The technology not only led to the successful Quiet Comfort line of consumer noise-canceling headphones, but a highly successful line for professional pilots, and even headsets for NFL coaches.
The company also installed the first audio system custom built for the interior of a production car — the 1983 Cadillac Seville. Today, several auto brands carry factory-installed sound systems, and they make use of complex speaker arrays. The sound system built for the most recent Cadillac CT6 model has 34 speakers.
Bose was fond of saying that if he had been a public company CEO, he would have been fired several times over.
He once said, "If I tell you that 'better' inspires fear — that even in the corporate world, people are scared of something better, you'd say that's ridiculous; everybody wants something better. Well, something better is always different. It isn't possible to make something better that isn't different. Whatever it is, if it's exactly the same, it isn't better. So it's the 'different' that scares people. When something's different, it's a heck of a gamble. And that's where 'courage' comes in."