The StreamR portable speaker, by Pure, claims to bring together the best of Bluetooth streaming, digital radio and Alexa voice technology. This is basically three devices in one, with a whole host of functions that are, for the most part, easy and straightforward to select. Like any device with multiple purposes on offer, you need to learn your way around the StreamR, but Pure has done a great job of trying to make this as simple and user-friendly a little speaker as possible.
There aren’t many colour options available - we received the speaker in charcoal (aka black), and it is also available in stone grey (which seems pretty close to a silvery white.) Whilst there isn’t much variety to choose from, both designs are classic and attractive, and either are a safe buy for someone of any taste.
There are a couple of snazzy little twists to the StreamR’s design, too. Pressing on the top of the device will pop the speaker up or down, with a handy digital display on the side. Then, there’s the light ring that travels around it: this band of light is a fun colourful touch on the otherwise sleek and neutral speaker, and it comes with an elaborate colour-code system to tell you the status of the speaker. With nine different options, you will need to learn what your speaker is trying to tell you – otherwise, a sudden flashing amber light could startle you and you won’t know whether Alexa is having an error or just reminding you of notifications. The light even grows or shrinks around the edge as you raise or lower the volume, and when you check the speaker’s battery level, the ring will light up with a number of green panels to show you the charge amount. Cool, right?
Learning your way around the controls is far simpler than learning your StreamR’s colour language. All of the buttons are found on the top of the speaker – there’s a simple + and – for your volume, and a multi-function button in the centre that is easy to press when you need to mute or unmute the radio, pause and play songs or summon Alexa, depending which mode your StreamR is in. Pairing to Bluetooth or auto tuning to the radio both proved easy, and you can link to your Amazon Alexa account with similar ease if you download the Pure Home app.
A handy addition is the StreamR’s ‘preset corner’ function: in each corner, the speaker has a button that you can set to a particular radio station. These are incredibly easy to set up – simply press one of the preset corners when a station is playing, and the speaker will save it to that button.
The battery life on this speaker is pretty good: you can get up to 15 hours of play out of one charge, although it does take six hours to charge it. The sound quality is also decent; the speakers can put out 30 W RMS, have a 2” woofer and a ¾” tweeter, and use a digital signal processor. However, the real stand-out element for the StreamR is how much it’s capable of. You can look it up online for a full break-down of its functions, but from taking calls to moving easily between radio, Bluetooth and Alexa, this is much more than just a speaker. RRP £169.99
4.5 out of 5
Good battery life
Helpful light display
Detailed online guide
No USB plug adapter included in box (Only the Micro-USB cable)
Not many colour options
Takes six hours to charge