Have you ever dropped a Bluetooth loudspeaker in your pool? Me neither but apparently it happens enough that UE decided to introduce the new Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM 3 and HYPERBOOM Bluetooth Loudspeakers for the beach, pool, or a raging river in the Grand Tetons.
Portable Bluetooth loudspeakers have become a big segment within the category and Ultimate Ears faces some stiff competition from Sonos, Bluesound, JBL, Bose, and Sony in 2022. Consumers love to take their music with them and because all of these wireless loudspeakers are compatible with smartphones and tablets, they have to be able to withstand a lot of abuse and get wet when taken outdoors or on vacation.
We live blocks from the Atlantic Ocean and almost always take our DALI or Bluesound Bluetooth Portable Loudspeakers with us to the beach. The DALI KATCH G2 is not a great outdoor speaker so we usually leave it on a towel or sticking out of a beach bag.
The Monoprice Soundstage3 is certainly more robust than the DALI, but carrying a 12 pound loudspeaker to the beach is not happening.
Ultimate Ears have focused on durability, battery life, and sound quality with these two new models and the prices are certainly higher due to the focus on durability, range, and battery life.
Made with 100% recycled polyester fabric and a minimum of certified 31% post-consumer recycled plastic that gives new life to recycled end-of-life electronics, the Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM 3 proves that you can deliver a lot of performance in a smaller package.
An ultraportable speaker with surprisingly big 360° sound, the WONDERBOOM 3 can last up to 14 hours, and its IP67 rating means it is waterproof, dustproof and floats. Take it to the pool, the beach or on a hike. It’s also perfect for listening to music at home and even in the shower.
Do people really take Bluetooth loudspeakers into the shower? We are certainly old enough to remember the old shower caddies with battery-powered FM radios that would hang from the taps or shower head but we are far more inclined to install a pair of lights in the bathroom with built-in Bluetooth speakers from JBL or Sony in that scenario.
The Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM 3 will come in four colors at launch, including Joyous Bright (Gray), Hyper Pink, Performance Blue and Active Black. The speaker features 40 meters (or 131 feet) of Bluetooth range, so you’re free to roam, and it features a handy loop so you can take it with you.
The range seems unusually high and we plan on testing that outdoors and inside to see if that claim is even remotely accurate. We have averaged 10 to 15 meters with most portable Bluetooth speakers so that would be a rather substantial improvement.
You can also pair up two wireless WONDERBOOM 3 speakers for even bigger sound. Press once to double up. Press again for true stereo from both speakers, with left and right channels.
HYPERBOOM, Ultimate Ears’ loudest and bassiest speaker, has also received a fresh upgrade — an all-new white version. The HYPERBOOM offers a wide dynamic range that brings your music to life, rendering every note in rich detail, and a rechargeable battery that lasts up to 24 hours.
It also supports four input sources — two Bluetooth, one 3.5mm auxiliary and one optical audio — so you and your friends can play music from your phones, laptop or gaming console, and easily switch between them with just the press of a button.
If you need to move from the living room to the backyard, the adaptive EQ on the HYPERBOOM reads the environment and automatically adjusts the sound to fill any space.
The HYPERBOOM is also “party-proof.” With an IPX4 rating, it can withstand drink spills or pool splashes. And if your phone is running out of power, plug it into the USB charge-out port on HYPERBOOM and keep the music going. Using One-Touch Music Control, you can also play, pause and skip tracks directly on the speaker.
HYPERBOOM is supported on the Ultimate Ears BOOM app, available from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. On the app, you can set up favorite playlists, remotely turn the speaker on or off, adjust volume and more. You can also check that you have the latest speaker software and connect HYPERBOOM with any other BOOM, MEGABOOM or HYPERBOOM speakers using the app’s PartyUp feature.
“These speakers are beloved for a reason,” said Jonah Staw, general manager of Ultimate Ears. “Not only do they have incredible sound, they make music a social, shared experience — and now with the recycled materials used in WONDERBOOM 3, we’re taking steps to reduce the product’s carbon footprint.”
Pricing and Availability
Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM 3 will be available for purchase in the United States, Europe and Asia Pacific in August 31, 2022 and in Latin America in January 2023 for a MSRP of $99.99.
- $99.99 at Amazon (USD)
- $129.99 at Amazon.ca (CAD)
Tip: Look for discounts on WONDERBOOM 2, which is only slightly different. The previous generation has one hour less battery life and about 25% less wireless range.
Ultimate Ears HYPERBOOM white SKU will be available for sale beginning in September 8, 2022 in select countries for a suggested retail price of $449.99.
- $449.99 at Amazon (USD)
- $549.99 at Amazon.ca (CAD)
Tip: The original HYPERBOOM from 2020 remains available in black. The new white model for 2022 only offers a cosmetic update.