Imagine you’re listening to some music and wandering through town, on a hike or out for a walk in the park. These are moments when you want to be present: taking in your surroundings, maybe helping a tourist who got lost or chatting with a friend you happen to find along the way. But if you’ve got your headphones on, the first impression others get is “leave me alone”.
That’s where Bose Frames, our Bluetooth sunglasses with a soundtrack, come in. Now you get to listen to your own personal set of speakers without anyone ever realising (unless you tell them of course!). We spent one year creating Bose Frames—one of the smallest wearable devices we’ve ever engineered. Why? Because we know people want personal, open-ear audio that keeps them connected to the world around them.
Frames connect via Bluetooth to your smartphone and use special technology that keeps your ears open, while directing sound into them. Inside each temple is a tiny 16-mm speaker, and ports on the outside and underside of the temple are designed to minimise the sound that transmits beyond your ears. There’s a flat cable running through the gold-plated steel hinges of the sunglasses that sends audio, data and power to these speakers. There’s also a microphone in the right temple which makes it easy for friends and family to understand you on phone calls.
Most people say they feel kind of like they’ve gone undercover when they use Frames: able to listen to music or a podcast without anyone noticing. You get rich sound which you can immerse yourself in and even if someone is pretty close to you, they won’t be able to hear much. So, you can bop along to that cheesy ‘90s pop song, with your fellow beachgoers being none the wiser.
Noise cancelling headphones are great, especially when you want to isolate yourself from your environment, like when you’re flying, on a crammed commuter train or trying to get work done in a noisy open plan-office.
With Frames you stay plugged into your surroundings and if you see someone you know you can use the button on the right temple to press pause, skip forward or back. The same button even lets you answer or end a call on your sunglasses. Bose Frames enhance your environment and help you get more of your day without missing any of it.
Frames weigh only 1.5 ounces (45 g), making them a nice and comfortable alternative to headphones that fully cover your ears. You can also stream music for up to 3.5 hours on a single charge. So now instead of grabbing a full bag of electronics for your afternoon out, all you need are your sunglasses and your phone.
A lot of gimmicky smart glasses can make their users look like human cyborgs. Frames are intentionally designed to look classic and timeless. They’re available in a rounded design, aptly named Rondo, and in a more angular version, called Alto. You also have the option of customising them with polarised or different coloured lenses. Bose Frames are already one of the top five premium sunglasses brands in the US—competing with the likes of Ray-Ban® and Oakley—and top 10 worldwide.