Thinking of treating yourself to a speaker to up your home's sound system game? Here's our pick of the most stylish pieces of audio technology.
Image: John Lewis & Partners
With Black Friday on the horizon, you might be thinking about new tech purchases incentivised with a major, major discount. While improving your audio offering isn't always top of the priority list, it's a little luxury that will really improve your enjoyment of your music, podcasts and entertainment when listening at home.
For the design-obsessed among us, audio quality is one thing, but, more importantly, we want a device that complements the hard work we've put into our interiors.
With that in mind, we've highlighted 6 of the most stylish, least tech-looking speakers, both smart and otherwise, for the chicest, most discerning of households.
Image: Sonos x HAY
Sonos is a premium audio brand that is never one to ignore the aesthetics of its designs. The Sonos One is not only a reasonable price for the level of audio quality at £199, it's sleek and streamlined. Usually, it's available only in black and white, but there are still certain colourful versions from the limited edition Sonos x HAY collection which launched last year, including this quirky Pale Yellow colour. Not only will the Sonos One fill your home with sound, it has Amazon smart assistant built in, and access to over 80 music streaming services through voice control and app operation.
This year, Ikea launched a range of accessible smart speakers in collaboration with Sonos - the results of which include the Symfonisk table lamp. The design incorporates a WiFi speaker that can be operated wirelessly, using the likes of Airplay from iOS devices to easily play music, podcasts and more. We love the fact that this design blends the speaker into your home, and for the price, it still delivers on that superior Sonos sound quality.
Image: Bang & Olufsen
The AW19 limited edition versions of the Beoplay A1 are a perfect buy for interiors-lovers, capturing 3 of the most on-trend colours right now, including Peony, pictured, and warm tones of Chesnut and Tan. To give you a scale reference, the A1 is about the size of a small dinner plate, and features a stylish leather pull to make it easily portable. With a 24 hour play time on one charge, 360 sound and a built-in microphone for voice calls, Siri and Google Assistant, this Bluetooth speaker has some serious power packed in beyond its pleasing exterior.
When it comes to incorporating a speaker seamlessly into your home, you can't do much better than Koble's range of smart side tables. Each features a 360 Bluetooth speaker, wireless phone charging, aux input and touch sensitive controls, all within a stylish furniture design. Our particular favourite is the Zain, which delivers an strong silhouette and undeniably charming Mid-Century vibe.
Google, Amazon, Apple - every big tech brand worth its salt has a smart speaker these days, but they often look quite basic compared to the more design-led speaker brands. With that said, Amazon offer its Echo device with a Twilight Blue fabric covering – a nice touch that offers a more thoughtful approach to how technology fits into the design of our homes.
This portable Bluetooth speaker from Leff may not offer the most in terms of smart functions of all the speakers on this list, but its by far one of the best looking. It offers great sound quality for such a small device also, and mirrors an alarm clock design by Leff, which means they could sit in a perfect pairing on either side of the bed.