Bose Frames Audio Sunglasses
After a seemingly soft launch earlier this year in the US, Bose is now marketing their new Frames Audio Sunglasses globally. And along with this global roll-out, Bose is introducing an optional Lens Collection to personalise your new wearable speakers.
Now I’m sure most true audiophiles may well dismiss the frames, and to be honest, I’ve been sceptical. Not just of these, but of the whole sunglasses mounted headphones market.
But, these are Bose! And Bose knows audio.
The new Bose Frames come in two different styles. Alto has a more classic angular look, while Rondo has a circular frame and lens. Both, however, share the exact same specifications for performance.
Inside each arm of the frame, there is a Bose Speaker. They are positioned so that it can maximise the amount of sound and minimise noise pollution for others around you. On the exterior of the arms is a smaller speaker which provides external noise cancellation to enhance the audio being pushed towards your ears.
Frames look like the world’s most iconic eyewear — but feature the tiniest, thinnest, most lightweight Bose system ever. With a proprietary open-ear design, they take micro-acoustics, voice control, and personal audio to an entirely new level
Read More: Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700
I can see the Pros and Cons of these. Whilst I like the appeal of having my music play whilst walking around a city, as an example, how much of the surrounding sounds will impact my playback?
As sunglasses, they provide the expected protection from the sun for a $200 pair of shades. Both styles block 99% of UVA/UVB rays and come with standard tinted scratch-resistant lenses.
The new Lens Collection gives Bose Frames owners the option to personalise should they wish. Options include different polarized lenses for each model alongside a standard non-polarized Blue Gradient lens.
Despite being packed full of technology, the Frames weigh nearly the same as a pair Ray-Ban Original Wayfarers at just 45g.
Read More: Bose Sleepbuds – No Music
For me, the feature with the most potential is the concealed microphone on the right arm. The Frames support the new Bose AR (Augmented Reality) platform which is shaping up to offer real potential for travellers.
Over a Bluetooth link to your smartphone and via the Bose Connect App (Apple iOS, Android AR support is still in development) the Shades can provide audible information on your surroundings.
Imagine directions from Google Maps to guide you through a new city, or transport wait times when stood at a bus or tram stop. The platform is still being developed but offers huge potential.
The microphone also opens up the option of using a voice assistant and to make and receive calls hands-free. There is a single multi-touch button for all the tasks, or if you prefer, the Bose Frames work with Voice Control.
Sadly the protective case does not charge the Bose Frames. But with up to 3 hours of playback between charges they should last you a day.
I think privacy, or the lack of it, might be an issue with the Frames. Bose has claimed that the speakers are angled in such a way to benefit the wearer and not project sound out to others. I’m not so sure this will work well in quiet places.
However, they also bring the potential for those on adventure holidays where a bit of music whilst being aware of your surroundings is a good thing.
The best news is this is another platform for Bose AR. Since the Headphones 700 launch, I’ve been realising just how potentially powerful this could be for travellers.
- Dimensions –
- Alto: 162 x 148 mm with an 18mm Bridge
- Rondo: 154 x 142 mm with a 15.5mm Bridge
- Weight – 45g
- Colour Options – Matte Black Only
- In the Box –
- Charging Cable
- Carry Case
- Cloth Bag
- Battery Up To 3 Hours Playback
- 2 Hour Charge Time
- Bose AR Compatible
How Much do the Bose Frames Audio Sunglasses Cost?
The Bose Frames Audio Sunglasses are available now in the US, Canada, Europe, and select markets in the Middle East and Asia-Pacific. Both versions are priced at $199/£199/€299 direct from the Bose Store.
Alternatively, you can purchase either the Alto or Rondo from Amazon.
Join the Conversation
Do the Bose Frames Audio Sunglasses appeal to you? Could they add anything to your travels? How do you feel about Bose AR?
Comment below or join the conversation on Twitter.
Visit bose.com for further information.