Most of us use our phones these days to play and stream music. Because Bluetooth is so popular, it makes sense to offer multiple wireless networks. Even if a portable speaker mainly uses Wi-Fi, it’s nice if Bluetooth is available as a backup.
That being said, because we stream so often, there are now many Bluetooth speakers — and some of them are subpar. I’ve tested many of them and quite a few suffer from a large range of problems from poor bass and muddled highs to unreliable Bluetooth connections, short battery life, and general fragility.
These experiences in mind, I was pleasantly surprised at the Sonos Move speaker and its ability to meet nearly all of my picky speaker preferences.
Water-resistant (think — rain and snow but not full immersion) and drop resistant, this speaker can withstand a lot. It’s a bit heavy for its size — about seven pounds — but, with a built-in grip on the back, it’s easy to transport and you can use it anywhere. Covered by a tough, shock-resistant outer layer, the speaker is safe from bumps and scratches and can withstand harsh weather conditions such as humidity, precipitation, dust, heat and more.
One problem I’ve frequently encountered when testing speakers in the past is that they don’t last long — maybe three hours. I like to sit on my back deck and watch the sunset with background music. Nothing is more frustrating than sitting down and getting comfy only to have my music cut out after just a little while. With an astounding 10 hours of battery life, an hour or two off the charger hardly makes a dent in the Sonos Move’s lasting power.
Another unique feature of this speaker is its power station. Rather than a plug-in cord (although it’s also compatible with any USB-C charger), the speaker charges when you set it on a sleek charging station that plugs into an outlet.
The speaker’s crisp sound levels are amazing. It can handle deep bass, and its use of Trueplay allows the speaker to automatically balance sound levels depending on where you are and what outside noise may be surrounding you.
I tested the Move in my small apartment. As soon as I turned it on and pressed play it felt as though I were being transported to another world as the soundwaves engulfed me. The booming bass and silky smooth treble resonated through my apartment, perfectly adapting to the space.
This sound adaptation feature is great for listening outdoors or anywhere that background noise may be an issue and ensures a bright sound every time you turn it on. Through the Sonos app, you can actually connect to multiple Sonos speakers at once creating powerful surround sound.
You can control the speaker using your voice, the Sonos app, Apple Airplay 2, or Bluetooth when Wi-Fi isn’t available. This is actually Sonos’ first speaker with Bluetooth capabilities. One major downfall of this feature, however, is its inability to connect to Bluetooth without first connecting to Wi-Fi through the app. While their other speakers depend solely on Wi-Fi connection, this speaker’s Bluetooth feature is only available after the speaker is set up on Wi-Fi which means, if this speaker were to be reset in an area without Wi-Fi, the Bluetooth feature would be disabled.
The most impressive feature of the Sonos Move by far is its voice control capabilities. Incorporating Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri, it’s like three separate technologies wrapped into one which makes this speaker that much more valuable. All three of these are practical features that allow you to complete daily tasks hands-free. Setting timers, controlling music, getting news updates, finding quick answers to questions and more just became so much easier.
Overall, this is a great speaker and it has some really cool features. At $399, it’s not an impulse buy but, with all the different technologies wrapped into one, it seems worth the price.