BOSE FRAMES $199.99
Bringing augmented reality, audio together
You have to like a company that tries new things.
Bose is known for sound, as in home speakers, car audio systems and headphones. Now it is branching further into wearables with Bose Frames.
The frames are a nice pair of sunglasses with tiny Bose speakers in the glasses arms — so the speakers beam sound at your ears, leaving them open to be aware of environmental noise.
Bose Frames come in two shapes, a larger Wayfarer-like model called Alto and a smaller rounder-shaped model called Rondo. Both models offer the same audio components.
They use Bluetooth to connect to your phone, tablet or computer.
Out of the box, you’ll be instructed to download the Bose Connect app to make the initial connection to your phone or tablet. But you also can use the Bluetooth connection manager.
The frames can remember eight paired devices but can have only one active connection at a time. To change connected devices, you’ll have to turn them off, then hold down the power button until you hear “ready to connect.”
Basically you’re pairing them each time you switch connected devices.
The frames charge through to a small port on the right arm. The cable is proprietary (don’t lose it) and uses tiny magnets to keep it in place. A two-hour charge provides up to 3.5 hours of playback.
One flaw: There were volume controls on the glasses.
To change volume, you need to use your phone, either through the phone’s volume buttons or in the Bose Connect app.
The one multipurpose button on the frames do allow you to answer phone calls or talk to Siri.
Considering that the Bose Frames have very small drivers and there is nothing on or in your ear, they sound good.
The bass response won’t blow you away, though. There simply isn’t a ton of sound on the low end.
The sound was good for rock or classical music, but better with audiobooks, podcasts or talk radio. Also, since they are not noise-canceling, the environmental noise made a difference.
There isn’t much information yet, but Bose is promising a software update to enable the frame’s augmented reality function, which would let third-party apps interact with the wearer through voice prompts.
DALLAS MORNING NEWS