Almost a quarter of a century has passed since Bluetooth was introduced to the world, but the technology still impresses us. After all, what's not to like about being able to stream music, podcasts or audiobooks from the device in our hand to a speaker several paces away, without the need for wires? What impresses us even more is the fact you can now enjoy this privilege for next to nothing – and to prove it, we've put together a list of the best Bluetooth speakers under £100/$100.
We know what you're thinking: “Anything costing less than that price is going to be absolute trash.” Well, snort at your peril, folks, for every single one of these boom boxes has a lot going for it – and not just the fact that you can buy one with the contents of your piggy bank. As well as bringing you our ultimate list of the best Bluetooth speakers under £100/$100, we'll also tell you what to look for when choosing a Bluetooth speaker to ensure that you make the right buying choice for you.
Best Bluetooth speakers under /£100/$100: The Louder Choice
It's amazing what you can get for your money these days. The EarFun UBOOM will barely make a dent in your bank balance, yet ticks all the right boxes, offering impressive sound quality, power, battery life, range and weatherproofing, as well as Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity. Alright, so it only comes in black, but if you can cope with the lack of funky colours, then this is an excellent choice whether you want to play your music inside or out.
The Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 2 does come in a range of funky colours, and offers a lot more besides, including up to 13 hours of battery life, a super-quick recharge time and a decent amount of oomph (even if Ultimate Ears doesn't specify exactly how much). In all honesty, there really isn't much to separate this speaker from the EarFun UBOOM, so we've elevated the latter to pole position based on the fact that it's half the price.
Best Bluetooth speakers under /£100/$100: Product guide
EarFun might sound like an odd name, but its little UBOOM speaker is dynamite. Aesthetically similar to the 2nd Generation Amazon Echo, this portable powerhouse belies its price tag with an impressive list of features, including 2 x 12 watts of power, 360-degree sound, voice assistance, a built-in mic for hands-free calls, DSP processing and Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity.
It's perfect for music lovers on the move, too, offering up to 16 hours of battery, protection against water and sweat, and a dedicated outdoor mode that ups the volume so that you can hear your music over those ambient noises. Connect two UBOOMs together and you can even experience true wireless stereo – at this price, you can afford to.
Ultimate Ears doesn't specify the exact wattage of its Wonderboom 2 speaker, but the official description of "surprisingly loud" is perfectly adequate. For its diminutive size, this little sound box is a real head turner, pumping out a generous amount of volume – especially bass – in all directions. If you're using it in the garden, activate the Outdoor Boost and you'll get even more oomph, helping to drown out your next door neighbour's unruly kids.
Speaking of taking it outdoors, the Wonderboom 2 offers up to 13 hours of battery life – and even when that runs out, you can fully recharge it in as little as 2.6 hours. Add in an IP67 rating that means it'll withstand everything from spillage to spew, and you have yourself a speaker that'll party just as hard as you do.
There's a reason why the Amazon Echo (4th Generation) sells like hot cakes – it's brilliant. Not only does it look snazzy with its spherical form factor and colourful glowing rings, it's a treat for the ears, too, filling the room with precise, meaty sound. Whether you want to stream music from your device via Bluetooth, or subscribe to Amazon Music Unlimited (opens in new tab) and ask Alexa to play something from its 90-million track database, you'll be in your element.
As the Echo runs on mains power only, it can't be taken to the beach or park, and that'll obviously be a major bummer for some. But if you're looking for something that'll blast out the tunes while you unload the dishwasher, this glorious globe is hard to beat.
Playing tunes on the beach is one of life's great pleasures, but you'll need to make sure you have a speaker that can cope. The TriBit Stormbox is a perfect candidate for the job, offering brilliant battery life, protection from sand and sea water, and a diminutive form factor that means you can easily stuff it inside your towel bag. It doesn't sound bad either, pumping out 2 x 12 watts of immersive audio to ensure that fellow bathers can hear your summer playlist, too.
That is, unless your phone or tablet is more than 20 metres away from the speaker, at which point you can expect the Stormbox's Bluetooth 4.2 connection to give up the ghost. Yes, the wireless range is a little disappointing, but on the whole the spec sheet is fantastic for such a small fee.
Sometimes, a song comes on that just makes you want to let it all go. We're talking Sweet Child O' Mine, Don't Stop Believin', Black Dog... If you're the kind of person who can't resist such temptations, then you're going to want a Bluetooth speaker that allows you to strut your stuff from dining room to downstairs loo, and back again. As its name suggests, the JBL Go 3 is that speaker, offering a mammoth 69 metres / 226 feet of wireless range to ensure that your signal won't fade out while you're channelling your inner rock god.
OK, so this device isn't going to win any awards for battery life, offering just five hours of play time. But at least it only takes two and a half hours to recharge it to its full capacity, at which point you can strap on your air guitar and do it all again.
While the design of the Anker Soundcore 3 doesn't exactly blow us away (those symbol-shaped controls on the top of the device are a bit childish for our liking), and other speakers on this list offer more power and better wireless range, this brick-shaped boom box has a lot going for it. Twenty-four hours of battery life will ensure that the party continues well into the next day, while IPX7 weatherproofing will enable it to carry on playing even if the heavens open.
Best of all, with a pair of pure titanium diaphragm drivers tucked away under the bonnet, the Soundcore 3 delivers the kind of stereo sound quality that you might expect from a speaker costing three times this price. An ideal option for music lovers and money savers everywhere.
With its upgraded cylindrical design, IPX6 waterproofing and 15 hours of battery life, the Tronsmart T6 Plus is exactly the kind of thing you want in your bag (or even in your hand) when venturing outdoors. The fact it offers up to 40 watts of power, sumptuous 360-degree sound and three different equaliser settings just makes it all the more appealing.
And you needn’t worry about your phone or tablet packing up in the middle of your al fresco disco, as this little speaker has a built-in 6600mAh power bank, meaning your devices can charge up while you boogie on down.
You don't need to spend an arm and a leg to get a Bluetooth speaker that'll turn heads. For the price of a night out, the Edifier D12 offers good looks in spades, its wooden enclosure and physical knobs give off a luxury vintage vibe that reminds us of high-end '70s separates. It's not just a pretty face, either; with twin four-inch woofers and the same number of 19mm silk dome tweeters working in tandem, this budget boom box delivers 70 watts of fine-tuned sound.
The D12 doesn't run on batteries, meaning you won't be able to take it to your mate's barbecue or blast it out on the beach. On the flip side, it has a remote control for when you can't be bothered to get off the sofa, while two wired inputs mean you can hook it up to audio gear that doesn't have Bluetooth.
Best Bluetooth speakers under £100/$100: Buying advice
Getting a Bluetooth speaker for under £100/$100 is obviously pretty cool, but it'll mean nothing if the speaker in question doesn't do the things you want or need it to. So, don't part with your hard-earned cash until you've checked for the following things:
Does it run on battery power? If you're planning on listening to music at the seaside or local park, you'll need a speaker with a built-in battery. Obviously, the more battery life it offers, the better – anything over eight hours can be considered very decent – and also look for something that doesn't take ages to recharge. If you're not fussed about taking your speaker on outdoor excursions, then the mains-powered Amazon Echo (4th Generation) and Edifier D12 are both great options for home-based listening.
How portable is it? No one's going to want to take a Bluetooth speaker on outdoor jaunts if it's impossible to carry. So, if you want music on the move, make sure the device you've been eyeing up is light enough to lug around. A carry handle can be useful, but it shouldn't be a deal breaker if your chosen speaker is compact enough to fit in one hand.
Is it loud enough? We're not going to lie, some cheap Bluetooth speakers would struggle to be heard over a gnat's fart. That's obviously not going to cut the mustard if you're planning on using it to soundtrack a noisy event – for example, a party or a barbecue. So, look for something with decent wattage – and if the speaker has an 'outdoor' setting that boosts the volume to help drown out al fresco racket, even better.
Is it waterproof? If you're heading outside, you could face a whole range of adverse conditions, from rainfall to dust. So, make sure your speaker is protected. All of the products on our list offer some kind of weatherproofing, but some are more robust than others. Find out more about what the different weatherproof ratings (opens in new tab) mean.
Does it have decent wireless range? Wireless range refers to the maximum distance your phone, tablet, etc, can be from your Bluetooth speaker before the Bluetooth signal starts to go awry. So, if you're planning to strut around the house and garden doing your best Angus Young impersonation, you might want a speaker that's up to the task. Happily, all the products in this guide offer good wireless range – especially the JBL Go 3, which is good for around 69 metres/226 feet!
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