Quality is always worth paying for
Connecting the speaker to your Bluetooth device is straightforward, and after the first time the speaker remembers the connection as long as the other device is turned on. One downside is that the Soundlink will only pair with one Bluetooth device at a time. If you have multiple devices capable of connecting, you will have to power them all down except the one you want to link. You can connect another device to the Soundlink with a traditional cable (which is not included) into the auxiliary input.
The speaker has controls for volume, mute, and a switch to the auxiliary input, but that’s it. There is no pause, play, back, forward, nor is there a remote. If you think about this for a minute, you’ll realize that all of these functions are available on your Bluetooth device, which is itself the only remote you need. You are not going to lose your phone, but how careful are you going to be about keeping track of a redundant Soundlink remote?
The Soundlink uses a standard AC plug to recharge the batteries. It can’t be charged via a USB connection, nor does it have a USB port to charge other devices. There is a micro USB port on the back, but this is solely there for future firmware upgrades.
The one extra that it would have been nice to see is the ability for the Soundlink to function as a speakerphone for the bluetooth device that it is connected to. That’s a personal opinion, though, and there are probably just as many people out there who don’t want their phone conversations broadcast for the room to hear. I suspect that if a feature was not universally considered to be a “good thing”, the Bose engineers just left it off.
The Bose Soundlink has a lot more competition in the marketplace now than it did when it first came out. There are some speakers out there costing less with more features, and some costing more with arguably better sound. With Bose, quality always shines through. If you can afford a Bose Soundlink, it’s a solid high quality choice and one that won’t disappoint.