By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Los Angeles — Beats Electronics added a wireless version of its recently updated Studio headphones, updated its Pill wireless speaker, and introduced an enlarged version of the Pill, known as the Pill XL.
It also debuted several accessories for the Pill, a first for the company.
The company reintroduced the wired version of Beats Studio headphones in July, and a company spokeswoman told TWICE that a wireless version had always been in the works. Like the wired version, the Studio Wireless Bluetooth headphones feature the company’s Adaptive Noise Canceling technology, designed to cancel ambient noise without affecting sound quality. The spokeswoman said the two versions have the same design and specs, including the same weight, although Beats declined to provide further technical information.
The headphones have on-ear controls; consumers can answer calls by pressing the B button on the ear cups. Other features include a build-in rechargeable battery, cable with in-line mic and remote, on-device battery indicator, cleaning cloth and a carrying case. The battery life is said to be 12 hours for wireless use and 20 hours for wired. They charge via MicroUSB.
Three colors will be available in December for a $379 suggested retail: Titanium, matte black and glossy black. This is Beats second noise-canceling headphones; the Beats Wireless is an on-ear model for $249.
Its new Bluetooth speaker, the Pill XL, is a super-sized version of the Pill speaker that launched in October 2012. The Pill XL features a built-in handle, battery indicator and 15 hours of play time. It will shut off automatically after not playing music for 10 minutes.
The speaker also has nearfield communications (NFC) technology, and users can tap two Pills XL speakers together to play the same song. If they tap them together twice, one speaker will act at the left output and one will act as the right for stereo sound.
Suggested retail is $299. It will come in just black.
The company also updated the original Pill speaker by adding the ability for the speaker to charge the connected mobile device. The design has also been tweaked, the spokeswoman said, with fixed buttons that don’t need to be pushed as hard. The Pill also has NFC with tap to pair, tap to amplify, and tap to stereo features. A Pill can be tapped to a Pill XL to simultaneously play the same song, but they can’t tap for stereo sound as the sound would be unbalanced, she explained.
Suggested retail is $199, and it will come in six colors: red, black, blue, silver, pink and white. Both the Pill XL and updated Pill will be available in December.
Finally, the company also introduced three new accessories for the Pill speaker, a first for the company. The Pill bike mount has a swivel base, bottom strap mounts and a top strap for $49.95, while the Pill silicone sleeve has a detachable magnetic cover and a carabiner. The sleeve comes in black or red for a $29.95 suggested retail. Beats is also launching Beats Characters as Pill holders.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.