Danish technology company Bang & Olufsen is no stranger to producing speakers with unusual designs. Just look at the A9, the Beosound 2 and the recent Level.
Its latest creation is different. Called the Emerge, this is a smart speaker inspired "by the compact form factor of a book," and designed to hide amongst the hardbacks on your bookshelf. Intended to complement most home aesthetics, or tuck away between a couple of books, the Emerge is available in two colors. These are pale oak wood with gold detailing, and all black.
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Bamg & Olufsen adds: "Built to extend sound without taking up space, Beosound Emerge's resemblance to an interior object allows it to seamlessly integrate alongside books and other domestic objects."
The side panels are designed to wrap around the unit like the covers of a book, while the Bang & Olufsen name is written vertically like the title of a book on its spine. The company says it has chosen tactile and warm materials for the Emerge in a further bid to turn a piece of technology into something homely.
The Beoplay Emerge is available in Europe from April 15 and globally from the fallBang & Olufsen
Although the design is still recognizably B&O, we like how the Emerge is far more subtle in its approach than other members of the Beoplay range, like the huge A9 that acts as a piece of art or furniture in its own right. Whereas that requires a great deal of space, the Emerge could slip neatly into almost any home.
Despite the compact design (and option to surround it by books), B&O says the Beoplay Emerge still delivers "full range, ultra-wide sound...through its revolutionary driver configuration." Inside, the Emerge has a four-inch woofer, a 1.45-inch mid-range speaker and a 0.6-inch tweeter. A pair of Emerges can be wirelessly connected to create a stereo pair.
The Emerge uses the same replacement module that first appeared in the Beosound Level earlier this year, in a bid to make the speakers future-proof by letting owners swap out components as they are improved upon over the years.
The speaker is available in two colors, including this black anthracite optionBang & Olufsen
B&O's Christoffer Poulsen adds: "Whether placed on a bookshelf in the bedroom or a tight corner of the kitchen, Beosound Emerge's slim design allows you to extend your music to a new room or complement an existing speaker in the same area without taking up extra space."
As for connectivity, the Emerge has Airplay 2, Chromecast, Spotify Connect and Bluetooth 5.0, plus a microphone for Google Assistant. There's also an optical audio input jack, Ethernet and a USB-C port for power.
B&O says the Beoplay Emerge is available in Europe and the UK from April 15, priced at €749 and £669 ($920), and it will be released globally in the fall. There is no US price just yet.
Check out The GearBrain, our smart home compatibility find engine to see the other Bang & Olufsen premium speakers and compatible products that work with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa enabled devices.
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