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Bose® Home Speaker 500

Multi-room powered speaker with Wi-Fi®, Bluetooth®, and built-in Amazon Alexa (Luxe Silver)

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Item # 018SPK500S

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Overview

Our take on the Bose® Home Speaker 500

“Fill any room with impressive wall-to-wall stereo sound from a single speaker.” That's what Bose said about their new Home Speaker 500. I was skeptical — until I took it home to audition. The system features two custom drivers facing in opposite directions. And they deliver. The sound radiated outward from the sides of the Home Speaker 500, filling the room with a wide stereo soundfield. But that's just the start.

Stunning, room-filling sound

Bose Home Speaker 500

Available in black and white.

“Fill any room with impressive wall-to-wall stereo sound from a single speaker.” That's what Bose said about their new Home Speaker 500. I was skeptical — until I took it home to audition. The system features two custom drivers facing in opposite directions. And they deliver. The sound radiated outward from the sides of the Home Speaker 500, filling the room with a wide stereo soundfield. But that's just the start.

The Home Speaker 500 has Amazon Alexa built-in, so you can use voice commands to pick your music. You can also stream directly from your smartphone or tablet via Bluetooth. The speaker is simplicity itself to operate with either voice, smartphone app, or integrated control buttons. And with a Bose Soundbar 700 or Soundbar 500, it can be part of a multi-room audio system that's just as easy to control as a single Home Speaker 500.

“Alexa, play my weekend party playlist”

Amazon Alexa opens up a world of entertainment options. You can tell the speaker to play music from a variety of music services, such as Spotify® Premium, Amazon Music, Pandora®, and more (some require subscriptions). Listen to your favorite radio stations from across the country or internet radio station from around the globe.

Plus you can ask for news and weather updates, stock information, and more. Set reminders and alarms, all with your voice. The Home Speaker 500 has an eight-microphone array to ensure your voice commands are clearly heard.

Bose® Music app for single- and multi-room use

The free Bose Music app turns your smartphone or tablet into a powerful remote. It gives you simple, step-by-step instructions for setting up your Home Speaker 500. The app also lets you select six presets for your speaker from all your available music sources. Preset 1 could be your local radio station, preset 2 a Pandora station, preset 3 a Spotify playlist, and so on.

In short, the app gives you full control over your Home Speaker 500. And if you add additional Bose smart home speakers and sound bars, it can control them as well. Each speaker can play something different, or you can group speakers to all play from the same source.

Simple, hands-on control

The app is great, but you don't have to carry a smartphone around with you at all times. Six preset buttons give you instant access to your favorite music sources. A top-mounted mic-mute button lets you disable Alexa for privacy, without affecting speaker operation. You can easily control volume, play, pause and skip tracks right from the speaker itself.

The speaker's color LED screen displays artist, album art, and song info. It can also tell you what the sound source is (Bluetooth, Preset 1, Pandora, etc.).

Which music services work with Alexa?

Here's the list of music services you can control with Alexa (updated November 2018):

  • Spotify® (Premium account required)
  • Pandora®
  • Amazon Music Unlimited
  • iHeartRadio
  • SiriusXM
  • Deezer

Product Highlights:

  • connects to your Wi-Fi network for wireless music listening
  • built-in Bluetooth lets you stream directly from compatible devices
  • 8-microphone array for clear voice pickup
    • top-mounted mic-disable button
  • Amazon Alexa voice control built-in
    • control music playback
    • select which Bose smart speakers or sound bars to play
    • volume, play, pause, skip and repeat functions
    • access to Alexa skills, such as weather reports, smart home commands, and more
  • Bose Music app
    • free download from Apple App Store® and Google Play
    • support for online music services, including Amazon Music, Spotify Premium, Pandora, Deezer Premium, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, and SiriusXM (subscriptions required for some services)
    • expand your multi-room system with additional Bose smart speakers and sound bars
    • remote control of each connected compatible Bose component
    • play the same song through multiple speakers or different songs in different rooms
  • six presets offer instant music playback with the press of a button on the speaker or remote
  • simple app-based setup using your mobile device
  • 6 top-mounted preset buttons
  • 2 custom drivers mounted 180° apart for room-filling sound
  • color LCD display
  • seamless anodized aluminum body
  • requires AC power
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • Wireless speaker
  • 57" AC power cord
  • Quick Start Guide
  • Important Safety Instructions

Really nice, would love to see more streaming sources, maybe more are coming through an update....

Lloyd, Advance, NC

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Features

Premium Design & Sound: Inside the Bose Home Speaker 500 are two custom drivers that point in opposite directions to bounce sound off the walls for a wider stereo soundstage that places instruments and vocals where the artist intended. It produces powerful, lifelike room-filling stereo sound without artificial affects or distortion. You can adjust the speaker's Bass & Treble through the Bose Music app on your Apple iOS or Android device. The Home Speaker 500 also looks as good as it sounds. A seamless, anodized aluminum body gives the speaker a refined finish that's perfect for practically any room.

Multiroom Audio: The Bose Home Speaker 500 is part of a new family of Smart Home speakers and soundbars from Bose that can be used to create a wireless multiroom audio system over your home's WiFi network. You can start with one Bose Home Speaker 500 and add more Bose Smart Home speakers and soundbars to create a wireless multiroom audio system in your home.

  • Compatible Multiroom Audio Sources: Internet radio, select online music services, Bluetooth audio, and analog Aux inputs can be listened to on a single speaker or multiple speakers.
  • Number of Audio Zones: You can create up to 4 audio zones. Each zone can be set to play the same audio source or set to play a different audio sources. You can also group different zones together.
Note: The family of Bose Smart Home speakers and soundbars is not compatible with the family Bose SoundTouch products.

Built-in WiFi: The Bose Home Speaker 500 offers built-in, dual-band (2.4/5GHz) WiFi (802.11 b/g/n) to wirelessly connect the speaker to your home network. The Home Speaker 500's WiFi network connection can be setup initially from the Bose Music app on your compatible Apple iOS or Android OS device.

Note: The Bose Home Speaker 500 does not offer a wired Ethernet connection to your network.

Bose Music App: The Bose Music app (for Apple iOS 10.3+ and Android OS 5.1+) lets you set up and control compatible Bose smart speakers and soundbars from your Apple iOS or Android device. It works with one or many of the new Bose family of smart speakers and soundbars - including the Bose Home Speaker 500, Bose Soundbar 500, and Bose Soundbar 700. Using the app, your mobile device acts as a remote for the speaker. From the app, you can stream music, set and change presets, add music services, explore internet radio stations, configure Alexa and manage speaker settings.

  • Music Control: The Bose Music app lets you browse and play the music you love from Spotify, Pandora, Amazon Music, SiriusXM, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, and more from your Apple iOS or Android device. The Bose Music app also  makes it easy to set your favorite playlists or stations as presets (up to 6 presets), so you can access them effortlessly.
  • Multi-Room/Multi-Source: The Bose Music app lets you control one or multiple Bose Home Speaker 500, Bose Soundbar 500, and Bose Soundbar 700 in your home. You can play the same music throughout your home or listen to different music in different areas.
  • Audio Settings: The Bose Music app can be used to control volume level and adjust the speaker's Bass & Treble level.
  • Multiple Users: The Bose Music app lets multiple users personalize their experience and control their content. One person can quickly access their Spotify playlist, while another easily listens to the latest podcast. Now it's simple for the whole household to enjoy their favorite music and more. 
  • Simple Setup: The Bose Music app also makes setup easy, walking you through each step. Simply download the Bose Music app on your device, plug in the speaker, and open the app to get started. The app will guide you through setting up your account on the speaker, adding your account information for your favorite music services, and adding Amazon Alexa to the product.

Built-In Alexa with 8 Microphone Array: The integration of Alexa with the Bose family of Smart Speakers will support the vast majority of Alexa functionality; including music playback, control of smart home devices, setting timers and alarms, and general information requests. Just under the surface of the Bose Home Speaker 500's top-panel is a custom-designed, proprietary eight-microphone array that is precisely positioned for accurate near-field and far-field voice pickup. You can rest assured that the Bose Home 500 Speaker will hear you even when there is a lot of noise in the background, your music is playing loud, or you are across the room.

  • Music Control: Currently you can ask Alexa to play music from Amazon Music, Pandora, SiriusXM, iHeartRadio, Deezer and TuneIn on a specific speaker, a group of speakers, or all speakers. Once your music is playing, you can also ask Alexa "what is playing", "turn volume up or down", "skip to the next track", "go to the previous track", or "stop music". 
  • Smart Home Skills: Various Alexa smart home device skills work through the Bose Home Speaker 500, its built-in microphones and the integration of Alexa. For example, you can ask Alexa - "set my smart thermostat to 72 degrees" or "turn off the lights".
  • News & Information: Use the Bose smart speaker to ask Alexa about world & local news, traffic, weather, sports, and other topics or events.
Notes:
  • The use of a virtual assistant is optional; you can initiate music from the Bose Music app and other sources without using Alexa. The option to enable Alexa can be declined in setup and revisited at any time. You can also remove Alexa from the speaker at any time via the settings menu of the Bose Music app. And when Alexa is installed, the microphones may be turned off at any time with the microphone off button on the speaker.
  • The  microphones on the Bose Home Speaker 500 may be turned off with a single tap of the microphone off button on the top of the speaker. This button completely cuts power to the microphones so Alexa will not hear any commands. For security reasons, it is not possible to use a voice command or the Bose Music app to turn the microphones on or off; only a physical button press can control the microphones. When the microphones are off, this button will always be backlit with a red LED light.
  • There are certain Alexa skills that the Bose Home Speaker 500 does not support; such as Alexa Calling & Messaging. Alexa is not available in all languages and countries.

Online Music Services: The Bose Home Speaker 500 can play music directly from streaming music services over WiFi, controlled either by the Bose Music app (for Apple iOS and Android), or Amazon Alexa through the built-in microphones. These music services can be controlled from the Bose Music App (for Apple iOS and Android) and Alexa through the built-in mics. Basic playback functions such as Play/Pause & Previous/Next Track can be done from the unit's top-panel controls. Song/artist information (including Album Art) will be displayed on the speaker's LCD screen.

  • TuneIn: TuneIn includes access to more than 100,000 free internet radio streams from all corners of the globe. Just select the TuneIn logo from the main Music menu and browse among the 100,000 stations neatly organized into popular categories and select a station that appeals to your mood.
  • Pandora: Pandora is personalized radio that plays music and comedy you'll love. Just start with the name of one of your favorite artists, songs, comedians or composers and Pandora will create a custom station that plays similar tracks. You can also rate (thumbs up/thumbs down) songs as they play, and Pandora will adapt stations to your feedback. You can even bookmark stations and easily switch between favorites.
  • Spotify Connect: Spotify Connect enables Spotify Premium users to instantly select and wirelessly stream music to the speaker from within the Spotify app (Apple iOS or Android). Spotify is a digital music service that gives you on-demand access to one of the largest music libraries in the world (over 15 million tracks and counting). Spotify makes it easier than ever to discover, manage, and share music with your friends. You can browse music by artist, album, track, or most popular; and create your own music library with customized playlists.
  • SiriusXM: SiriusXM Internet Radio lets you listen to over 120 channels of commercial-free music, talk radio, news, sports, entertainment, and more. Subscription fees will apply.
  • iHeart Radio: iHeart Radio: is a free, all-in-one digital radio and music streaming service that lets you listen to thousands of live stations from across the country and allows you to create personalized custom stations featuring songs from the artist you select and similar music.
  • Amazon Music: Listen to over a million songs, thousands of playlists, and ad-free personalized stations with Amazon Music. Requires an Amazon Prime membership (currently $10.99 per month or $99 per year). You can also upload your personal music collection from iTunes or Google Play Music to your music library on Amazon and then stream your music to the Bose Smart Home speaker.
  • Deezer: Deezer is an online music service offering over 43 million tracks starting at $9.99 a month. Discover the perfect playlist or make your own, as well as browse curated collections by genre.

Bluetooth Audio Streaming: With built-in Bluetooth, the Bose Home Speaker 500 can wirelessly play back stored music, music apps, and other audio content from your Bluetooth-enabled smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop computer. You can pair eight Bluetooth source devices to the speaker, but only one can be actively connected and used for playback at a time. The unit's top-panel controls can be used to control basic playback (such as Play/Pause & Previous/Next track); Alexa cannot be used to control Bluetooth audio sources. The speaker's front-panel LCD will also display song/artist info (no album art).

Notes:
  • Bluetooth audio streaming can be done without utilizing WiFi, the Bose Music app, or Alexa.
  • The Bose Home Speaker 500 does not support Bluetooth hands-free communication for making or answering phone calls.

AirPlay 2 (future firmware update): Through a future firmware update (no ETA), the Bose Home Speaker 500 will support AirPlay 2. AirPlay 2 is an advanced and easy-to-use wireless multiroom audio platform for iTunes, Apple Music, and other compatible Apple iOS apps. With AirPlay 2 you can play any sound from your Apple iOS device (running iOS 11.4 or later) or Mac computer (running OS X 10.13.2) on the Bose Smart Home speaker system and other compatible AirPlay 2 speakers throughout your home. You will also be able to ask Siri-enabled devices (like your Apple iPhone, iPad, or Watch) to control playback of your Apple Music on the Bose Home Speaker 500. You can choose to play audio in one room, play the same audio in grouped rooms, or play the same audio in every room (you can control and group directly from Apple's Music App and Home app on your Apple iOS device). You can even watch videos and movies from YouTube and Netflix on your compatible Apple iOS device or Mac computer with perfectly synced audio on the Bose Smart Home speaker system.

Note: AirPlay 2 does not support multiroom audio distribution via Bose Smart Home. Multiroom audio distribution can only be done with other AirPlay 2 compatible devices (sold separately).

Aux Input: In addition to wireless WiFi & Bluetooth connectivity, the Bose Home Speaker 500 is fitted with a rear-panel 3.5mm auxiliary input for connecting almost any portable audio device with a headphone jack or audio output.

Top-Panel Controls: The Bose Home Speaker 500 features capacitive touch controls on the top-panel for easy access to frequently used controls such as Volume Up/Down, Play/Pause, Previous/Next Track, Source Input (Bluetooth/Aux), Presets (1-6), Mic On/Off, and Action (Alexa).

LCD Screen: The Bose Home Speaker 500's LCD screen shows information about the content currently playing on the speaker; including album art, track name, artist name, music service information, radio station name, and location, etc. There is an optional clock setting available in the Bose Music app, which displays the time when the speaker is in standby mode. The display also shows setup and diagnostic information. It will automatically dim based on the brightness of the room, and will turn off if content is not playing.

Note: The LCD screen does not play video content and is not a touchscreen.

Clock & Alarm: In the settings menu of the Bose Music app, there is an option to turn on a clock so that the Bose Home Speaker 500 will show the current time on its LCD screen when it is in standby mode. You can also use Alexa to ask for timers and alarms.

Note: Timers & alarms are only done through Alexa and the Alexa app, not through the Bose Music app or controls on the Bose Home Speaker 500.

AC Power w/ Network Standby: The Bose Home Speaker 500 operates off of standard household current using the supplied 57" AC power cord. The Bose Home Speaker 500 transitions to Network Standby when audio has stopped and you have not pressed any buttons for 20 or more minutes. To wake the speaker from network standby, simply tap any button on the speaker, play/resume audio using your mobile device and the Bose Music app, or talk to Alexa.

Notes:

  • You can still access Alexa in Network Standby as long as it is set up using the Bose Music app and the microphone is turned on.
  • The Bose Home Speaker 500 is not battery powered.

Mounting Options: The Bose Home Speaker 500 has been designed to simply sit on a flat table-top surface. There are no brackets, threaded inserts, or keyhole slots provided to wall mount the speaker.

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