Bose Introduces the SoundTouch Family of Wireless Music Systems
Central to the systems are six presets for one-touch access to favorite Internet radio stations, Pandora channels, or play lists stored on a home network and a remote control app for iOS and Android smart devices and computers running Mac OS or Windows; the system also supports Apple’s AirPlay. Presets are created by selecting a station, channel, or album/song/play list and dragging it to the preset or by holding the desired preset for a few seconds. A Recents button provides a list of recently played music for quick access to current favorites.
All three systems include a compact remote control and have built-in Wi-Fi, while the SoundTouch 30 and SoundTouch 20 add a hard-wire Ethernet option. Any combination of systems can be used to create a SoundTouch ecosystem that enables music selections to be played through one system or all systems throughout the house; whenever a new preset is created, it will appears in all SoundTouch systems. Remarkably, you cannot control which rooms music plays in—it’s one or all—but a Bose representative said a multiroom feature will be added in the future.
In addition to personal music libraries, SoundTouch provides access to 18,000 Internet radio stations, including Pandora. Bose said it expects to add more music services in the future, which will be available as free software updates as the services become available.
Designed for large rooms, the SoundTouch 30 measures 10 x 17 x 7 (H x W x D) inches and incorporates a proprietary woofer with a 9-pound magnet loaded in a Bose’s signature waveguide. The SoundTouch 20 measures 7 x 12 x 4 inches and is intended for small- to medium-size rooms, while the SoundTouch Portable measures 6 x 10 x 3 inches and is powered by a lithium-ion battery.
More SoundTouch products and options are slated for introduction in the coming months. A SoundTouch-enabled version of the popular Wave music system will be available in December for $599. Several other ST-enabled products are slated for early 2014, including the SoundTouch SA-4 amplifier ($499) for use with outdoor speakers, a wireless adapter for use with Lifestyle home theater systems and the VideoWave entertainment system, the SoundTouch Controller ($99), and the SoundTouch Stereo JC Wi-Fi music system ($1,199), which teams a pair of Bose’s trademark Jewel Cube satellites with an Acoustimass bass module.
The SoundTouch Controller is a simple, disc-shaped remote that works with any ST system. In addition to central buttons for play, pause, and skip, an outside ring controls volume—turn it clockwise and the volume goes up. A simple wall mount with a magnetic latch is included so you can “hang” the Controller on the wall when it’s not in use.