With the summer drawing to a close, those in certain parts of the world might see this solar-powered speaker as useless in the dreary, sunless days ahead. However, it’s the perfect addition to a sunny day outside for what remains of the perfect weather.
The Earwig speaker is a solar-powered Bluetooth speaker from Danish company Earwig Audio. It runs off of only solar power to produce 60 hours of full volume and 200 hours at moderate volume. Those figures are certainly no small feat. The company also claims that the speaker’s solar regulator system is so good, it can recharge its internal battery all while playing your favorite tunes.
Much like other Bluetooth speakers on the market, It can also be connected to smartphones or tablets using a 3.5mm Aux input, or wirelessly thanks to Bluetooth 4.0 with controls for volume and power on the speaker itself.
The speakers are handmade at the company’s Copenhagen studio in Denmark, all designed and engineered in-house. The speaker gets its design after a minimalist Scandinavian aesthetic.
"The rectangular case is crafted with 12mm-thick Scandinavian birch plywood and features handholds for carrying a polished aluminum grille over its two front-firing eight-inch drivers, and an “unbreakable” monocrystalline solar panel on the top. The speaker measures approximately 20 inches wide by 10 inches tall and 10 inches deep, making it a bit larger than your average Bluetooth speaker," Digital Trends noted in its review of the gadget.
The inspiration for these speakers came from the need for power during the festival season. Camping out while waiting to see your favorite bands can be difficult if you need to recharge your many electronics. With a speaker like the Earwig, it could make it much easier to pre-game before heading to the stage.
The Earwig is so far only available in Europe, and, unfortunately, it's not shipping to the United States at the moment. If you’re lucky enough to live in either Denmark, Sweden, Belgium, France, Netherlands, or Poland, then you can order it on the online store for €530.
Out of Range but Not Out of Luck
If you’re out of the shipping range and can’t wait to get your hands on some nifty solar technology, then another option is the solar-powered Eton Rugged Rukus.
This outdoor speaker is IPX4-certified splash-proof and five hours of sunlight can charge the battery from empty to full. Playback lasts eight hours, and the little speaker has a dual purpose—it can charge your smart phone as well.
One useful feature of this small speaker is the loops for strapping onto backpacks or hanging on an umbrella on the beach. Better yet it only weighs 1.2 pounds with a drop proof capability of up to 3.3-ft. While it is splash proof, it’s better to not go diving with the Rugged Rukus, despite the need for underwater entertainment.
This speaker is available in the US at the Apple Store (and online), Amazon.com, REI stores and Eton.com for US $100.