Bluetooth speakers are kind of stuck in a design rut as of late, aren’t they? The speakers for the most part are black or silver plastic, with a sleekness that shows they’re part of the “modern age.” Look on Amazon and Kickstarter, and you’ll see plenty of speakers that are shiny, black and minimally-designed. People who enjoy a more classic look have a limited selection and that appears to be the reasoning behind BONGO Bluetooth Wood Portable Speaker by Otis & Eleanor.
Bongo features a vintage vibe with bamboo styling, along with linen and brass. The design is modeled off old analog radios, complete with cotton tweed speaker covers. It’s a combination of vintage meets the technology of today, because of its Bluetooth capability. Bongo has 30 feet of wireless range and features 15 hours of battery life before it needs a recharge. Inside are premium drivers and dual passive subwoofers with 360° degree sound. The Bongo team choose to use bamboo in the construction because it delivers a warm sound and enhanced bass. Not to mention, bamboo is sustainable and lightweight.
There’s plenty of Bluetooth speakers on the market, so at this point, you’re likely familiar with how they work. Like others, Bongo works with Bluetooth 4.0 to connect to an iPhone, iPad, Smartphone, Chromebook, etc, but it also works with Echo Dot. Bongo was crafted to withstand you traveling with it too, from the beach to the office — again with the lightness of the bamboo construction. You charge it with the included Micro USB cable and you can also use a 3.5 mm audio cable if you aren’t feeling Bluetooth. Bongo also packs a built-in speakerphone function.
Otis & Eleanor have designed their Bongo line to be inspired by several cities as an homage to not only music, but wonderlust. Models named after Geneva, Oslo, Cartagena, Venice and Sao Paulo feature different stylings and fabrics from the locale. The size measures 6.5″ x 2.1″ x 2.6″ (LxWxH) so it’s a good size for a shelf.
The people behind Bongo are located in Brooklyn and identify themelves as world travelers who are “design-obsessed.” They created the stylish look of Bongo to escape from a world of ugly plastic cheapers and I have to say, I love it. Bongo has been featured in a variety of publications but I only saw it recently.
So how much does a Bongo run? For this premium design and high-tech materials, you’re paying less than $100.00, so that’s pretty decent. Bongo retails on the Otis & Eleanor website as well as Amazon, where it has multiple 5-star reviews.