Today, Nokia announces a partnership with speaker experts JBL to create a range of audio accessories, plus the first fruits of the relationship: the JBL PlayUp Portable Wireless Speaker for Nokia.
Keen-eyed readers will note that the new PlayUp speakers bear a considerable resemblance to last year’s Nokia Play 360° portable speakers.
And why not?
The brightly-coloured, cylindrical design of the Play 360° won near-universal acclaim from customers and reviewers, and also wonawards. There’s one major change on the design side, though: this model is made of specially created double-shot plastic to add extra durability to the design.
Inside, however, the guts of the speaker have been entirely revised to bring JBL’s excellent audio know-how to the party.
The PlayUp portable speaker delivers crystal clear sound – in every direction – thanks to JBL technology, to finely reproduce every detail of your recordings. It’s not shy, either, with a maximum output of 89dB – so it’ll be great for the garden or picnics, as well as your living room.
Unlike other portable speakers, there isn’t an issue with “tinny-ness” at the low end. It has a specially designed bass port, which acts as a woofer.
Frequency response is rated at 85Hz – 22kHz (-6dB) which, for non-techies, means “floor-tremblingly low and dog-botheringly high”. Make sure your downstairs neighbours are invited to the party if you live in an apartment!
The PlayUp portable speaker is specially made to complement our current and future Lumia smartphones. Music is transferred using Bluetooth. An accessory app will be available so you can remote-control the speakers right from your phone.
Next-generation Lumia smartphones using Windows Phone 8 will be able to tap-to-connect using NFC – an extra convenience that will speed up your time-to-music considerably.
Older phones or MP3 players without either Bluetooth or NFC aren’t left out, though – they can also connect using a standard 3.5mm jack. There’s a cable supplied in the box for this, together with a carrying pouch and a MicroUSB charger.
The dimensions of the speaker are 118 x 118 x 128mm, and it weighs 760g. The rechargeable battery inside will last for 10 hours in normal use, and, of course, you can run it off AC power using the charger indoors. It will come in cyan, white and black – plus a new bright yellow colour.
The JBL PlayUp Portable Wireless Speaker for Nokia will begin shipping before the end of the year and will cost approximately €149.
The PlayUp speaker marks the beginning of a whole new family of audio products jointly developed by JBL and Nokia. We can’t wait to see what comes next.