Gear Guy

Outdoor Bluetooth Gadgets: Philips ShoqBox

What’s the deal with Bluetooth? My phone supposedly has it. Can I connect camping and workout gadgets with Bluetooth to my phone—and will they work?

Outdoor Bluetooth Gadgets: Philips ShoqBox

A great new Bluetooth product is the one-pound ShoqBox from Dutch company Philips. The $179 speaker pairs with almost any cell phone to crank eight watts of crisp sound from the onboard neodymium speakers and bass radiators. Now, lest you think we’re advocating using this thing from your backpack, violating the stillness of the AT by bumping MGMT songs at full blast—we’re not. But a portable speaker that accesses MP3s on your phone around the campsite after a long day could be great with the right crowd. The seven-inch speaker is shock-proof and splash-proof, and has an onboard gesture sensor—move your hand in front of it to skip, pause, or resume tracks. The rechargeable lithium battery lasts for eight hours. Unfortunately, for stereo sound, you’d need to buy two ShoqBoxes (and haul two pounds on your back). That might be overkill.

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