Wireless speakers use either Bluetooth to connect to your music-playing device; or WiFi to connect to a streaming service. We tested budget options as well as pricier models, and consider what to look for when buying.
Overall score breakdown
Overall score is based on:
Sound (45%): Scored by our panel of experts. A variety of audio tracks, including music and spoken word, are judged on each device.
Ease of use (30%): Considers the clarity and accuracy of the manuals supplied and the ease of setting up the speaker, as well as connecting it to a device and sending music to the speaker.
Sound signal (10%): Tested by looking at several factors, including having the audio source in different positions, using various audio sources, interference, obstruction and degradation.
Battery (10%): Based on how long the battery lasts when listening to audio. For models without a battery, this score is omitted and Sound is weighted at 55% instead.
Features (5%): Rewards speakers with a variety of connectivity options and helpful features such as physical buttons or a voice assistant.
About our test
Our panel of expert listeners judge the quality of a variety of music, spoken word, and other sounds on each device and score them out of 10. These scores are collated into an overall sound score.
The tracks are:
Here to Stay - Pat Metheny Group
War - Frankie Goes to Hollywood
Your Song - Rita Ora
Galway Girl - Ed Sheeran
a radio play of Harry Potter
a speech about mathematician Pierre de Fermat.
The panel also listens to pink noise, which is like white noise but noticeably deeper because it has equal energy per octave.
We've tested 61 wifi and bluetooth speakers.
Find the right one for you.