Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you

B&O’s Alexa-enabled A1 arrives in Australia

It’s taken a little bit of extra time, but if you fancy a portable speaker that can play nicely with Amazon’s smart assistance, the updated B&O A1 is in Australia.

Sometimes things take a little longer to arrive in Australia. It used to be the case with TV shows, and is still the case with some movies.

Technology can be like that as well. Take the reinvention of the Google Pixel Buds, which launched just recently several weeks after friends across the ocean in America received them. While we tend to get a lot of products largely on time, not everything hits Australia when other parts of the world see a launch.

That’s certainly true in regards to one of the latest speakers from Bang & Olufsen, the new take on its round B&O A1, a favourite for portable audio that saw an update earlier in the year.

Back when it was launched in May, B&O’s Australian arm didn’t expect the A1 2nd gen to arrive in Australia until around June, and while it’s a month later, it is now hitting store shelves and online outlets.

And while the look is very close to what Bang & Olufsen launched on the original, the features have changed slightly, offering far field microphones to pick up on your voice when you plan to talk to the in-built voice assistant, which is Amazon Alexa even when you’re on the go. It means if you have Alexa routines enabled, you should be able to trigger them when the A1 is talking to your phone.

Inside the new A1, there are two 30 watt Class D amps with redesigned drivers for marginally more volume than the original, and there’s even IP67 water resistance, so it can sit next to the bath or in the kitchen, or even take it to the pool for some splash-resistant sound (just make sure to wash it under the tap if it falls in, because water-resistance ratings are set for freshwater, not pool or sea water).

Battery life is set to a maximum of 18 hours, while pricing is largely what we expected, with the A1 2nd generation seeing release in Australia for $420 shortly.

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