Updated Bose SoundLink Mini II Model Does More - Costs Less - Sounds Great

Bose recently revamped it's SoundLink Mini Bluetooth speaker line with a significant range of improvements to make a great sounding Mini v.II speaker even more functional.

First up is vastly improved battery-life, now rated at 10 hours versus it's predecessor's 6 hour playback. The new model sports a standard micro USB power port and can be charged via any USB wall charger. It still ships with it's own charge cradle, the USB A to micro cable and a thankfully slim and low-profile USB AC wall charger. Design details like this are one of the reason to pay up for Bose products. Far too many other computer devices and gadgets tend to use generic, OEM power bricks that were clearly not part of a total, integrated design process.

A Press-And-Hold of the power button is used as a battery indicator. The LED lighting changes from green to yellow to red as remaining charge diminishes.

The Mini II now (finally!) features a built-in noise canceling microphone, allowing you to use it to make speakerphone calls. Auto-pause and resume of music occurs when a call comes in - and after it ends with no further manual intervention needed

Bluetooth pairing was also significantly improved. Instead of just a single device, it can now remember 8 previously used devices, and can simultaneously pair with two at the same time. Spoken voice commands help assist with the pairing process. Verbal help is a new trend in wireless Bluetooth speakers rather than just 'beeps' , 'boops' or flashing LEDS to visually indicate pair status. It must be said that users often find more verbose instruction very helpful the first few times you use a product, but then tend to find it somewhat annoying. Do note that Bose uniquely identifies the connected computer or handheld devices by name, simplifying things when you pair and frequently use it with multiple devices.

On the appearance of the revised model: Bose's cosmetic touches include a micro-perforated steel grille and a slightly modified front bezel.

Bluetooth Lightbulb Speakers For Mac and iOS Gadgets

An entirely new category of Apple compatible wireless devices have hit the market, Bluetooth speaker bulbs. Yes, you read that right. For the first time you can listen to wireless LED lightbulbs singing or blasting out your favorite rock tunes while basking in the glow of the white or in some cases, changeable multicolor lighting.

 MiPow LED PlayBulb

With IOS Control App

MiPow's Bluetooth lightbulb speaker delivers dimmable white lighting from it's LED's and wireless audio when paired with your Apple Macbook, desktop Macintosh, iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch. There's an IOS app available to manage dimming and volume control directly from your iGadget.

Best Bluetooth Bulb Speaker

Quality JBL Speaker + IOS App

The high-end Bluetooth speaker lightbulb from Sengled+ features a premium Harman-JBL speaker driver for a noticeably better audio experience than some of the cheaper speaker bulbs out there. They claim 13 Watts of audio output with a 100Hz-20kHz frequency response range in a bulb enclosure designed to provide a surround-sound effect.

Dimmable LED Speaker

Physical Remote Control

The last Bluetooth wireless speaker lightbulb featured here is under $30 and includes a physical remote control to adjust lighting and volume levels. It doesn't support a companion IOS app but is a very affordable solution to explore the use of a wireless audio bulb speaker on a budget. Just pair the bulb with your Apple hardware and use the remote to control the lamp's functions.

Explore the above LED Bluetooth speaker lighbulb product links to get an idea of what these unusual LED speaker lighting systems have to offer. They're just part of a wireless and Bluetooth "Connected Home" range of devices and appliances that interface with Mac computers, Apple handheld gadgets, and soon, wearable computing accessories.

Keep in mind, Bluetooth has a rather limited wireless range of typically 30 feet - and often less. So you'll need to stay pretty close to the lighting fixture the bulb speaker is in to maintain the streaming audio connection. Also because of the simple physical limitations of many lamps and fixtures, the often bulky speaker bulbs may be a tight fit. Check the measurements closely, or look for more compact LED bulb speaker designs.

Bluetooth Speaker Looks Good - Sounds GREAT!

JamBox by Jawbone

Micro Sub-Woofer 2.1 Stereo with Hands-Free Call Management

Known for their top-notch Bluetooth headsets, JawBone has branched into external speakers. Internally, the JamBox is based on the same world-class 2.1 stereo audiophile hardware as the FoxLMB portable speaker. Extended bass response comes from the battery compartment which also functions as a low-frequency transducer. JawBone offers this stylish hands-free portable speaker available in 4 different color and speaker grille styles to suit your tastes. The built-in microphone offers HandsFree call management as well.

The JamBox delivers Impressive, high-quality stereo sound you can hold in your hand. The JamBox measures roughly 6"x2"x2" and offers up to 10 hours playback. Rubberized casing prevents it from rattling on your desktop. An additonal 3.5mm input jack allows you connect a wide range of other hard-wired audio devices. Battery recharges via USB cables provided.

Bluetooth And The iPad - What You Need To Know

In a really excellent article on iPad accessories, MacWorld/Playlist offers some very important insight on choosing and using a Bluetooth headset on an iPad. Specifically, that the iPad OS currently really requires an A2DP stereo compatible headset for listening. And just as revealing - that only the built-in mic - and not a Bluetooth headset's microphone is CURRENTLY supported in the 3.0 version of the OS. iOS4 is where you want to be in 2011 - there's been vast improvements to the Bluetooth code stack to enable even greater audio functionality.

Audiophile Quality HandsFree Wireless Speaker for Mac iPhone iPad

Hearing is believing when it comes to the high-end stereo Soundmatters foxLv2 Bluetooth Pocket Loudspeaker. This is the ultimate audiophile quality compact portable Bluetooth speaker for Mac OSX Leopard, iPhone-touch, and iPad users.

If it's $199 seems a little steep - watch this video first to get a better sense of the word class engineering involved - and why "You get what you pay for"

Implementing both A2DP Bluetooth stereo audio - and Hands-free call management for cell and iPhone use, this does it all - on your desktop - within range of your iPad - or on the go. Measuring only 5.6"x2.2"x1.4" . Even the rechargable LiOn 5hr battery is integrated into a bass radiator design at the rear of the speaker to truly get frequency response down to 80HZ.

Too rich for your blood? Ponder this alternative that MacWorld.com rated #2 behind the FoxL in it's Mac Bluetooth speaker roundup: the Altec Lansing inMotion SoundBlade Speaker