Bedside radios are largely dead thanks to phones, but Tivoli’s latest gadget looks to revive the category with an aptly named product.
Every time you stay at a hotel, there’s a good chance you’re minded of the bedside clock. Once a staple on a nightstand in every home, the bedside clock once provided the time, music, and the morning news to people when they needed all of them: heading to bed and waking up.
My my, how times have changed.
While radio in Australia isn’t quite struggling the way it is in every nation, our obsession with the bedside radio has taken a dip, and our phones are to thank. With these taking their place as the new bedside gadget, it’s no wonder our clocks have disappeared.
A phone on the bedside can provide the time, weather, and the news, all the while clearing the nightstand just that little bit more. The sound from a phone on the bedside stand might not be as loud as a proper speaker, but you may not care.
In recent years, there have been attempts to return the alarm clock’s position, thanks in part to bedside smart assistants, such as the Amazon Echo Spot and small Echo Show models, plus the Lenovo Smart Clock, but these might still be too cluttered. If that’s the case and you still fancy a gadget that modernises the approach, something from Tivoli is attempting to revive the night stand.
And it comes from an aptly named gadget, the Tivoli Revive, a speaker on a stand with a wireless charger.
If you have a recent flagship phone — generally anything over $1000 bought in the past year or two — you may be used to charging your phone wirelessly, using the standard known as Qi. While it has seen improvements from Apple with the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, the Qi wireless standard is found pretty much across all wireless charging docks, including ones bought from IKEA.
This is the technology in the Tivoli Revive, which also has a small speaker sitting on the side, allowing a phone to rest on the wireless charging pad and send its audio over Bluetooth to the speaker on the side. There’s also a USB port at the back in case you need to charge something else, say a pair of wireless earphones, and support for a 3.5mm port in case you want to directly plug in an audio source to that speaker.
Tivoli has also provided an LED lamp in the design, making it a combination of light, phone charger, and speaker, potentially cleaning up the bedside considerably.
Perhaps the tragedy in Tivoli’s Revive is that it has only been designed one way, with the speaker on the left and the charge pad on the right. The speaker itself can rotate 30 degrees either side, but can’t do a full 180 and rotate the other way.
It means if you want to position the Revive on a right-side nightstand, you either have to set the speaker closest to the bed or reposition the whole unit. One wonders if perhaps Tivoli had built in a little more rotation in the speaker hinge if this could be fixed.
Tivoli’s other issue is price, because at $399, the Tivoli Revive is hardly inexpensive. While Tivoli’s Revive does come with a speaker, it technically competes with other similar light and charge stands, such as the IKEA Riggad and Hektar, which both offer wireless charging and a lamp for $99, among others.
The Tivoli approach does appear to be different, with a few colours and wood grain approaches, including white, black, and a classic wood look, all of which has reportedly been made from a furniture grade wood cabinet while the speaker material has been made with Danish fabric brand Gabriel.
If the price doesn’t dissaude, you’ll find the Tivoli Audio Revive in select stores later this month.