The Beats by Dr. Dre badge has usually been attached to headphones and the occasional laptop or smartphone. We’ve never really seen it attached to dedicated speakers, however, and that’s where both an FCC filing and a sighting at UK retailer HMV’s online store raise a few eyebrows. The House that Dre Built appears on the edge of launching the Beats Pill, a Bluetooth wireless speaker with four drivers and a shape that more than explains the medicinal name. While we don’t know just how much of that signature Beats thump we’ll get, we do know from the FCC that the Pill can serve as a speakerphone, carries an aux-in jack and will last for a typical 8.5 hours on its USB-rechargeable lithium-ion battery. There’s also signs of a red version of Beats’ Mixr headphones coming at the same time. HMV has publicly scoured its pages of any trace of a ship date or price for the Pill, but cached copies point to a £170 ($276) price and a release around September 28th — not necessarily trustworthy figures, but they may be in the ballpark. Our only question is whether or not we’ll get a dose of the Pill in the US.
Braven the company formerly known as Spar has launched a new line of Bluetooth speakers in the form of the Braven Six. The new Braven Six series of 3 Watt stereo speakers are equipped with a subwoofer and 3.5-mm audio in and out jacks.
Together with a USB port which can be used to power your smartphone and recharge it using the Braven Six battery. That is equipped with enough juice to keep tunes pumping for up to 20 hours with the Brave 650.
Another great feature of the aluminium clad, is the ability to daisy chain more than one together. Watch the video below to see its features in action.
If we’re going to spend $599 on a phone for our phone, it needs to offer unparalleled audio quality, absolutely seamless device integration, and a drop-dead gorgeous design. Invoxia, a new entrant to the world of VoIP telephony, claims to have created just that, with its NVX 610. The desktop unit uses an iPhone (or iPod touch or iPad) app as its control interface — the hardware itself includes only touch-sensitive volume, mute, speakerphone, and voicemail keys. With the exception of accessing your iOS device’s address book, however, all of the phone’s hardware is self-contained. Calls are processed using the built-in ARM Cortex-A8 processor, and can be made via Skype or any third-party SIP. You can also take incoming iPhone calls using the handset or speakerphone, but all outgoing calls are processed using VoIP, not your iPhone’s mobile network. We took a peek at the NVX 610 at IFA, and definitely liked what we saw. Jump past the break for our initial impressions, and a (somewhat noisy) intro video from Invoxia CEO Serge Renouard.
From what we saw, the NVX 610 appeared to be conceptually sound, though because of connectivity issues we were only able to listen to a simulated demo mode. The device connects to your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad using the 30-pin dock connector, or over Bluetooth (a built-in connector and attachments can fit a variety of iPhones and iPod touches, and you can connect your iPad using an Apple-supplied dock connector cable). Renouard insisted that audio quality was identical when making actual phone calls, and if that’s really the case, we could easily see this replacing both corporate desk phones, which can sometimes cost close to the 610′s $600 retail price, and conference room speakerphones, which occasionally cost even more. And since the device can access your iPhone or iPad’s address book, being able to use multiple phones in the office while maintaining access to all of your contacts could prove invaluable.
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Jabra was parading its Freeway in-car speakerphone last night at CTIA so we took a chance to watch the show. So what separates it from the myriad of like devices? Well, for one it sports 3 speakers for decent stereo audio quality — for a change — a couple mics to reduce ambient noise, a motion sensor that turns the set on automatically when you hop in the car, and voice control for just about every control on the device. Talk time is touted as 14 hours with 40 days standby time and retail pricing looks pinned at $129. Our demo included some music playback in a very noisy space, and while the high end sounded a bit harsh we were suitably impressed coming from a rather thin and light device. Follow on for a few more pics of the Jabra Freeway.