Features to Look For in Bluetooth Speaker




Bluetooth speakers offer impressive audio quality and can be carried with you anywhere, and can even be paired together for a bolder sound. Plus, water-resistant Bluetooth speakers let you enjoy your music around the pool, on the boat, or at the beach without having to worry about the elements.

The beauty of Bluetooth Speakers is that you can carry your music wherever you go and listen to them without compromising on the audio quality. These days, Bluetooth Speakers pack in a bunch of features that go beyond the basics of good sound and long battery life. So, if you are in the market to pick one up, keep these things in mind before you make your decision.

   
Benefits of a Bluetooth Speaker

Audio on the Go

Bluetooth speakers are portable and can be taken anywhere. They can be used even on the go - all wirelessly and without interruption. Water- and weather-resistant speakers expand the places you can go — whether you clip on a speaker while hiking or biking, or bring one to the beach, the ballgame or camping.          

Rich audio experience

Bluetooth speakers are small without sacrificing sound quality. Even with their compact size and easy portability, they're designed with built-in amplifiers to deliver full-range audio whenever you want.

Wirelessly Connect to Your Devices

Connecting a speaker to your smartphone, MP3 player, tablet, portable game console or laptop is easy with Bluetooth technology. Some wireless speakers can even connect to each other for a richer, more developed sound.

You won't need special apps or hardware to use this technology as long as both the device and audio system are Bluetooth-enabled. However, there are apps available for some speakers to help make the experience more user-friendly. You can also find some wireless speakers that use Wi-Fi or AirPlay.

Choosing Your Bluetooth Speaker?

Features You Should Look For

Size and Style

Portable Bluetooth speakers come in a variety of colors, sizes and styles, designed to be packed in a bag, stowed in your pocket or carried by an attached handle. You'll even find speakers with pulsing lights that add extra ambience to your audio. Plus, optional covers and cases make for a custom listening experience.

Bluetooth version

The quality of output isn’t only determined by the quality of the audio file on your phone, but also the quality of the drivers powering the speaker and the version of Bluetooth used in it. Most speakers today are Bluetooth 4.0 and above, giving you better sound and battery life than previous versions. Bluetooth 5 scores more than Bluetooth 4 on that front, but there is time before we see Bluetooth 5 in portable speakers. For now, pick from Bluetooth 4.0, 4.1 or 4.2. 

Speakerphone

A lot of Bluetooth speakers have the ability to receive calls through your smartphone and have an in-built microphone for you to talk back through the speaker.
With a speakerphone setting, you can easily take calls from your phone. The feature is perfect for conference calls. You can also receive and reject calls from the speaker controls, which is a nice touch. The JBL Pulse 3 is a pretty good example of a speaker that offers a call option.

Connectivity options

Apart from Bluetooth, it’s good to have other connectivity options as well. The other common connectivity option found on portable speakers is the 3.5mm Aux input. Some speakers, like the Harman Kardon Aura Studio 2, support connectivity options such as NFC, Wi-Fi, Airplay, DLNA, and more. NFC lets you pair with smart devices faster, while Wi-Fi connectivity lets the speaker connect to the internet for streaming music. AirPlay support is Apple’s proprietary wireless streaming tech and is useful if you have an iPhone or iPad. Some even house a microSD card slot, that lets you load it with your favourite tunes which means you do not have to pair your smartphone to the speaker.

Water- and weather-resistance

Choose a wireless speaker that can keep pace with your active life. From the pool to the beach to all your outdoor adventures, a water-, dirt- or weather-resistant Bluetooth speaker will keep the playlist going wherever you are. 

Since a Bluetooth speaker can be used outdoors, it’s always better to get one that is weatherproof. There are some models that are even submersible, that you can take swimming with you and not worry about them getting damaged whereas others boast of being splash resistant and dust resistant, allowing you to use them in a variety of environments. Devices by Ultimate Ears, such as the UE Roll 2 offer both water and dust resistance and are good ones in this category.

Pair Multiple Speakers

Amplify your listening experience with portable speakers that can pair directly with each other. This is especially helpful when you want to share audio with a group of people in an outdoor setting where one Bluetooth speaker may not be enough.

The good news however is that a lot of Bluetooth speaker manufacturers have added the ability to daisy chain their speakers to one another to create a stereo experience or simply reproduce the same music through a bunch of speakers. Some speaker manufacturers, like Ultimate Ears, boasts of the ability to connect over 100 speakers together.

Charge your device

If you aren't near an electrical outlet, you can still charge your smartphones or other device via some portable speakers, using the speaker’s battery power. 

A built-in USB port allows you to plug in your cable to connect your smartphone, which makes them convenient option. You then need not to carry your power bank additionally. 

Additional Features

Voice control

Combines great sound with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant or Microsoft Cortana voice assistant. So, along with streaming music from your mobile device, you'll have your own personal assistant to get you the latest news, order a product or operate other smart home devices just by using your voice.

Smartphone App

A companion smartphone app can help you with a lot of features related to the speaker. For starters, it can be used to update the firmware of the speaker. Other use cases include monitoring the battery of the speaker, changing the equalizer setting, enabling smart assistant, setting an alarm and more. Most major manufacturers offer an app that works with their speaker. For example, Bose’s Connect app works with most of the company’s speakers like the Bose Soundlink Revolve Plus.

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