This week, a mini yet mighty surprise came in the mail today. The super cute Gear4 Espresso Wireless Bluetooth Speaker! The GEAR4 brand is owned and managed by Disruptive Hong Kong Limited (formerly Disruptive Ltd). GEAR4 was launched in 2006 and has been the market leader for both docking speakers and iPod and iPhone cases ever since. Aside from the aforementioned, they also have speaker docks and accessories as products.
TBH, I’m not really a fan of speakers because I listen to music with my earphones most of the time (yes, I don’t like quiet and dull moments while working). I started using mini speakers when my Dada bought one and let me use it but the downside to that was it needed a cable/wire so that I could play music from my gadget(/s). But Espresso changed that!
What’s Outside the Box
Here’s what it looks like before I opened the box.
The reason why it’s dubbed as Espresso is evident because of its coffee mug shape. It’s a portable wireless universal bluetooth speaker with a range of 10 meters. Its features are already in the box and you can actually see the product from the outside so you could already have a good look at it.
Here’s What’s Inside:
What’s inside the box: the Espresso unit, Quick Start Guide and the USB Cable.
Inside the box are three contents only. Upon opening, you immediately get to see the USB Cable you can use for charging the unit with your laptop, PC, or Mac. You can even use a USB charger for this. The Quick Start Guide, which is just a small piece of paper, tells you basic information about the product (i.e. how to turn it on/off, how to connect, its features, etc.) And of course, aside from the two, the unit itself.
An actual mug and the Espresso speaker. This photo is just to give you an idea of how small the unit is.
From the top view of the product, the opening of the mug is where the actual speaker is .The power button is at the bottom of the device and it plays a sound once you turn it on and off. You have to turn on the bluetooth of your device and once the Espresso is turned on already, it is already discoverable (bluetooth name: Espresso). The front view of the product only contains the name and logo of Digital Walker.
The carabiner handle of the Espresso is also a clip which enables you to attach the device to keys, bags, or anywhere it can actually hang. Isn’t that amazing? The rear end is where you can find three important parts of the device:
- Left LED light – This notification light signifies whether the unit is connected to a device. Blue blinking light means the unit is not yet connected and it becomes a steady blue light once the unit is paired.
- DC IN port – For charging the device.
- Right LED light – This one is for the charging notification light. Once plugged in with the USB Cable, a steady red light appears to notify that the unit is charging. The light goes off once it is completely charged.
I just had to try to clip it in my bag! Hihi.
I tried the speaker with my iPhone4S and my Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 (I uploaded a video on Instagram while using it with my tab; it’s not on full volume on the video). The battery percentage is easy to monitor with the iPhone because a vertical battery icon appears near the phone’s batt and bluetooth icon, but this does not appear when I pair it with my tab.
Performance and Conclusion
I was able to use the Espresso speaker for four hours. It did stand true to its expected battery life plus it’s easy to know whether the unit low on battery because it beeps every 30 seconds or so even if it’s still playing. Charging the unit took me more or less two hours to finish it. I have to say I was surprised with the sound quality from the device because it’s really powerful and the bass tone is almost surreal for a speaker of this size. Downside though is the unit has no volume control so you have to do it on your device. I also love the fact that it’s portable and you can bring it anywhere. This is perfect for out of town trips and even at home. I am now a fan of wireless speakers because of this!
The Gear4 Espresso Wireless Bluetooth Speaker is distributed by Digits Trading and is available at Astroplus, Astrovision, Beyond the Box, Digital Hub Burgos, Digital Walker, District 32, iGig, iStore, IStudio, Mobile 1, and Technoholics for P1,350.