Jawbone’s Jambox totally caught us off guard. Before listening to the diminutive device we had already decided that it couldn’t possibly produce awesome sound. Boy were we wrong. So that’s why we’re reserving judgement on Bose’s Soundlink Mobile, a Bluetooth, battery powered speaker (it can also be plugged in).
While the design leaves something to be desired – it looks oh so circa 1980s – it does sport four midrange drivers and two dual-opposing woofers that are placed opposite each other to provide full-range bass performance. It measures 5″ x 9.5″ x 2″, and weighs less than three pounds.
You can pair up to 6 Bluetooth devices with the portable speaker, though they can’t connect simultaneously and you’ll need to disconnect the first device in order to add a new one. Unfortunately, there is no AirPlay support.
As far as we can tell there is no hidden microphone for taking calls, but Bose has incorporated an Apple like Smartcover that magnetically adheres to the front of the speaker and automatically powers it off.
According to Bose the built-in battery will last up to 3-4 hours at max volume, or 8 hours at a “normal level.” Unlike the Jambox the battery is user replaceable, and the box has been ruggedized for added durability.
We’re not sure on a release date, but the cheapest model will sell for $299, while the premium version will fetch $349 and include chrome detailing and a leather cover.