There’s no need to face tangled wires, or wait forever to connect using Bluetooth, when it comes to playing music. Instant wireless connectivity is the way to go, or at least, it’s what Singapore-based Creative Technology believes. The maker of the acclaimed MP3 player, Zen, is back with a new range of Near Field Communication (NFC) enabled portable wireless speakers — Airwave HD and Airwave. More are expected by the end of 2013.
Wish to play music from your NFC-enabled smartphone? Simply touch the speaker with your phone. The connection takes a few seconds to set up (unlike Bluetooth which may take ages with some devices), and you’re good to go.
With a grille-like face, the Airwave series comes in a triangular prism shape with slightly inward indents on both ends. While the HD is available in black and bold red colour, the Airwave comes with a broader palette offering blue, green, pink and black options. We loved the sound quality of the Airwave HD; the in-built amplifier performs really well — with an impressive clarity of beats. However, the sound from the Airwave begins to crackle on full volume.
In-built power source
These speakers also come with in-built power source lasting up to 6-7 hours, which is rechargeable using micro USB, as well as Bluetooth connectivity.
The connectivity range on Bluetooth was impressive offering at least 10 metres. The speakers also come with an in-built microphone, which means they can double up as wireless hands-free, which is cool. But then, this feature makes sense only at homes, or else if you don’t care about others listening into your conversation. Both speakers are priced high at R12,999 for Airwave HD and R6,999 for Airwave, respectively; perhaps, because these are the first to offer NFC-enabled speaker system in India, but our guess is the fuss-free connectivity and good quality sound makes it appealing.
One of the first to label its headphones as Android-ready, the company also launched its Hitz series of headsets and earphones. The cheapest in the series is the MA2300, followed by MA2400 available for R3,499 and MA2600 available for R4,999. All the headphones come with a built-in microphone for calls, 1.2-metre single-sided flat cable with gold-plated plugs, but volume control is available only in
MA2400 and MA2600. Worse, these come without detachable cable, a feature that most buyers would expect at least with the MA2600. The earphone MA350 costs Rs 2,299.
Available To be announced soon.
Also try: Bluetooth speaker
This cup-shaped speaker from Simmtroncis has a built-in microphone (works well as hands-free), and an in-built power source, which can be recharged through USB. It uses Bluetooth 3.0, and connectivity is possible up to a range of 10 metres (although the sound crackles after five metres).
The sound quality is good, and it has a stylish design. But before you decide, our advice is to scour around the tech hub at Lamington Road, which offers similar Chinese imports at cheaper prices.
Available At most electronic stores.