HuffPost may receive a share from purchases made via links on this page.
Bose’s audio sunglasses — which are billed as “sunglasses with a soundtrack” — combine two basic commuter accessories, with tiny speakers that connect to your smartphone via Bluetooth and play music into your ears. But if you already have a solid pair of Beats or other wireless headphones, do you really need these audio sunglasses?
That’s what I was asking myself when I got a pair from a press event I attended this summer. I couldn’t imagine a world where I chose Bluetooth sunglasses over my high-quality earbuds.
I set out to see if they’re actually worth the hype.
My initial assumption — that they wouldn’t hold a candle to my standard earbuds — was immediately proven wrong. The ear pieces were a bit bulkier than those on regular sunglasses because of the built-in speakers, but they produced sound that rivaled those of my beloved Beats.
I quickly learned the best feature is that they turn off automatically when you take them off and place them upside down on any surface, which is something many people do naturally when they take off their sunglasses. In other words, I didn’t accidentally drain the battery in them because I forgot my sunglasses were also my wireless headphones.
I’ve barely taken off these sunglasses since I got them. I particularly like that I’m able to listen to music without having my ears covered by a giant foam pad — it makes me feel a lot more aware and alert.
“I’m able to listen to music without having my ears covered by a giant foam pad — it makes me feel a lot more aware and alert.”
The sunglasses are also sweat-proof, which was a game-changer in the summer when running or on the beach. And in the winter I won’t have to worry about layering a bulky hat, headphones and sunglasses on bright snowy days.
The price isn’t bad, either: At $199, they cost about the same as either a pair of high-quality designer sunglasses or a pair of high-quality headphones. You can also customize the lenses for an extra $30 (I opted for the add-on reflective rose-gold lenses).