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10 Best Speakers That Are Clever, Portable and Stylish

10 Best Speakers That Are Clever, Portable and Stylish

These days, everything has to be fast and easy: news, books, food, and even music. While there are plenty of apps that provide high-quality music streaming, the modern audiophile also wants good sound quality.

Lifehack has handpicked the 10 best speakers that are portable and totally stylish.

1. UE WONDERBOOM Super Portable Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker

    Big, clear, crisp 360-degree sound and big bass. Its 10-hour playtime makes it possible to take this with you on whatever outing you want! The WONDERBOOM is also incredibly waterproof: you can enjoy your favorite tunes in the shower, at the pool, or just walking around on a drizzly day.

    Best for: The urbanite listening to music in all weather conditions.

    UE WONDERBOOM Super Portable Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker, $99.99

    2. Sony XB10 Portable Wireless Speaker with Bluetooth

      Feel the power of the EXTRA BASS with this affordable Sony portable speaker! The water-resistant Sony XB10 connects via both Bluetooth and one-touch NFC. It weighs in at only 0.71 pounds, but its impressive battery life will allow you to listen for up to 16 hours when fully charged.

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      Best for: Super portability and affordability.

      Sony XB10 Portable Wireless Speaker with Bluetooth, $48

      3. Drifter Portable Smart Action Speaker

        If you’re looking for a “smarter” speaker with more functionality (and just as much portability as the competition), you might love the beautifully-designed Drifter. This speaker is both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enabled, has a touchscreen, and allows you to download songs right onto the device’s internal storage.

        The Drifter’s battery allows for 8 hours of playtime. It’s absolutely built for traveling: it’s 100% waterproof, can float, and you can clip it or mount it to stand alone.

        Best for: The nature-loving travel junkie

        Drifter Portable Smart Action Speaker, $250

        4. B&O PLAY by Bang & Olufsen Beoplay P2 Portable Bluetooth Speaker with Built-In Microphone

          This ultra-portable speaker fits in the palm of your hand or your pocket for the easiest transportation ever. It’s splash and dust-resistant, and although it’s small it has a big sound!

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          You can personalize your audio with “smart” features like snooze and voice activation, and it’s equipped with a built-in microphone for clear calling and voice activation. You’ll get up to 10 hours of playtime per charge.

          Best for: Hanging out with your family or friends

          B&O PLAY by Bang & Olufsen Beoplay P2 Portable Bluetooth Speaker with Built-In Microphone, $169

          5. Fender Bluetooth Battery-Operated Portable Speaker

            This Bluetooth speaker packs 30 watts of power, and – at 4.3 pounds – is on the larger side of the speakers on this list. At the same time, it’s got two woofers and one tweeter for maximally natural sound reproduction, and it has a built-in microphone if you need to use your phone hands-free.

            Best for: Outdoor parties where you need excellent sound quality

            Fender Bluetooth Battery-Operated Portable Speaker, $199.99

            6. Solar Speaker, Portable Wireless Bluetooth Bamboo Wood Speaker & Phone Charger by REVEAL

              Natural bamboo combined with energy efficient solar panels give this speaker an elegant and eco-friendly look. With excellent sound clarity, this solar speaker offers 8 hours of battery life when the sun isn’t out. You can even use this speaker as a charger for your smartphone, tablet or other devices while playing music on the go.

              Best for: The environmental-friendly audiophile

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              Solar Speaker, Portable Wireless Bluetooth Bamboo Wood Speaker & Phone Charger by REVEAL, $79.99

              7. Braven Stryde 360 Degree Sound [2500 mAh] Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker

                The Braven Stryde looks super durable, and it is. This bluetooth-capable speaker is waterproof and dustproof: in fact, it can be fully submerged in up to one meter of water for up to 30 minutes. Its cylinder shape means you can fits in almost any cup holder, whether you’re commuting to work or sitting in a lawn chair.

                Explosive sound is possible because of the dual passive radiator and opposing drivers for 360 degree sound. This speaker also has voice command control, like the Amazon Echo.

                Best for: Great sound on the road.

                Braven Stryde 360 Degree Sound [2500 mAh] Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker, $99.99

                8. GGMM E5 Wireless Bluetooth 4.0 Superior Sound Speaker

                  This award-winning portable speaker lets you connect directly to your Bluetooth. That means you can listen to internet radio or your favorite online streaming services even without connecting to your computer or phone. This speaker is also compatible with your Apple devices, so you can answer calls or forward them to voicemail at the press of a button.

                  With an impressive 15 hours of playtime, this super slim speaker is a mere 1.5 inches thick. It comes with a removable leather strap for convenient transportation.

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                  Best for: The listener who wants a long battery life.

                  GGMM E5 Wireless Bluetooth 4.0 Superior Sound Speaker, $99.99

                  9. Native Union Switch Bluetooth Speaker – SWITCH

                    These Bluetooth speakers feature high quality audio, noise reduction technology, and a super-sleek and professional design. It’s mainly designed for conference call functions, as it’s fully compatible with Skype, Google Talk, and other VoIP applications. You can also use it to charge your mobile devices.

                    Best for: Using in the office.

                    Native Union Switch Bluetooth Speaker – SWITCH, $106.82

                    10. ECOXGEAR EcoSlate Rugged and Waterproof Wireless Bluetooth Speaker

                      You can stream music up to 100ft. away using your smartphone or tablet. With up to 12 hours of playtime per charge, this speaker has waterproof tech and a built-in charger. It’s ideal for outdoor parties, driving, or more rugged activities at the beach, or while camping, hiking, rafting, etc.

                      The ECOXGEAR features speakerphone and microphone providing a hands free calls anywhere you might be.

                      Best for: The avid hiker or beachgoer

                      ECOXGEAR EcoSlate Rugged and Waterproof Wireless Bluetooth Speaker, $119.20

                      More by this author

                      Brian Lee

                      Chief of Product Management at Lifehack

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                      Last Updated on November 19, 2019

                      20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

                      20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

                      Are you usually punctual or late? Do you finish things within the time you stipulate? Do you hand in your reports/work on time? Are you able to accomplish what you want to do before deadlines? Are you a good time manager?

                      If your answer is “no” to any of the questions above, that means you’re not managing your time as well as you want. Here are 20 time management tips to help you manage time better:

                      1. Create a Daily Plan

                      Plan your day before it unfolds. Do it in the morning or even better, the night before you sleep. The plan gives you a good overview of how the day will pan out. That way, you don’t get caught off guard. Your job for the day is to stick to the plan as best as possible.

                      2. Peg a Time Limit to Each Task

                      Be clear that you need to finish X task by 10am, Y task by 3pm, and Z item by 5:30pm. This prevents your work from dragging on and eating into time reserved for other activities.

                      3. Use a Calendar

                      Having a calendar is the most fundamental step to managing your daily activities. If you use outlook or lotus notes, calendar come as part of your mailing software.

                      I use it. It’s even better if you can sync your calendar to your mobile phone and other hardwares you use – that way, you can access your schedule no matter where you are. Here’re the 10 Best Calendar Apps to Stay on Track .

                      Find out more tips about how to use calendar for better time management here: How to Use a Calendar to Create Time and Space

                      4. Use an Organizer

                      An organizer helps you to be on top of everything in your life. It’s your central tool to organize information, to-do lists, projects, and other miscellaneous items.

                      These Top 15 Time Management Apps and Tools can help you organize better, pick one that fits your needs.

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                      5. Know Your Deadlines

                      When do you need to finish your tasks? Mark the deadlines out clearly in your calendar and organizer so you know when you need to finish them.

                      But make sure you don’t make these 10 Common Mistakes When Setting Deadlines.

                      6. Learn to Say “No”

                      Don’t take on more than you can handle. For the distractions that come in when you’re doing other things, give a firm no. Or defer it to a later period.

                      Leo Babauta, the founder of Zen Habits has some great insights on how to say no: The Gentle Art of Saying No

                      7. Target to Be Early

                      When you target to be on time, you’ll either be on time or late. Most of the times you’ll be late. However, if you target to be early, you’ll most likely be on time.

                      For appointments, strive to be early. For your deadlines, submit them earlier than required.

                      Learn from these tips about how to prepare yourself to be early, instead of just in time.

                      8. Time Box Your Activities

                      This means restricting your work to X amount of time. Why time boxing is good for you? Here’re 10 reasons why you should start time-boxing.

                      You can also read more about how to do time boxing here: #5 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity.

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                      9. Have a Clock Visibly Placed Before You

                      Sometimes we are so engrossed in our work that we lose track of time. Having a huge clock in front of you will keep you aware of the time at the moment.

                      10. Set Reminders 15 Minutes Before

                      Most calendars have a reminder function. If you have an important meeting to attend, set that alarm 15 minutes before.

                      You can learn more about how reminders help you remember everything in this article: The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder That Works)

                      11. Focus

                      Are you multi-tasking so much that you’re just not getting anything done? If so, focus on just one key task at one time. Multitasking is bad for you.

                      Close off all the applications you aren’t using. Close off the tabs in your browser that are taking away your attention. Focus solely on what you’re doing. You’ll be more efficient that way.

                      Lifehack’s CEO has written a definitive guide on how to focus, learn the tips: How to Focus and Maximize Your Productivity (the Definitive Guide)

                      12. Block out Distractions

                      What’s distracting you in your work? Instant messages? Phone ringing? Text messages popping in?

                      I hardly ever use chat nowadays. The only times when I log on is when I’m not intending to do any work. Otherwise it gets very distracting.

                      When I’m doing important work, I also switch off my phone. Calls during this time are recorded and I contact them afterward if it’s something important. This helps me concentrate better.

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                      Find more tips on how to minimize distractions to achieve more in How to Minimize Distraction to Get Things Done

                      13. Track Your Time Spent

                      When you start to track your time, you’re more aware of how you spend your time. For example, you can set a simple countdown timer to make sure that you finish a task within a period of time, say 30 minutes or 1 hour. The time pressure can push you to stay focused and work more efficiently.

                      You can find more time tracking apps here and pick one that works for you.

                      14. Don’t Fuss About Unimportant Details

                      You’re never get everything done in exactly the way you want. Trying to do so is being ineffective.

                      Trying to be perfect does you more harm than good, learn here about how perfectionism kills your productivity and how to ditch the perfectionism mindset.

                      15. Prioritize

                      Since you can’t do everything, learn to prioritize the important and let go of the rest.

                      Apply the 80/20 principle which is a key principle in prioritization. You can also take up this technique to prioritize everything on your plate: How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

                      16. Delegate

                      If there are things that can be better done by others or things that are not so important, consider delegating. This takes a load off and you can focus on the important tasks.

                      When you delegate some of your work, you free up your time and achieve more. Learn about how to effectively delegate works in this guide: How to Delegate Work (the Definitive Guide for Successful Leaders)

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                      17. Batch Similar Tasks Together

                      For related work, batch them together.

                      For example, my work can be categorized into these core groups:

                      1. writing (articles, my upcoming book)
                      2. coaching
                      3. workshop development
                      4. business development
                      5. administrative

                      I batch all the related tasks together so there’s synergy. If I need to make calls, I allocate a time slot to make all my calls. It really streamlines the process.

                      18. Eliminate Your Time Wasters

                      What takes your time away your work? Facebook? Twitter? Email checking? Stop checking them so often.

                      One thing you can do is make it hard to check them – remove them from your browser quick links / bookmarks and stuff them in a hard to access bookmarks folder. Replace your browser bookmarks with important work-related sites.

                      While you’ll still checking FB/Twitter no doubt, you’ll find it’s a lower frequency than before.

                      19. Cut off When You Need To

                      The number one reason why things overrun is because you don’t cut off when you have to.

                      Don’t be afraid to intercept in meetings or draw a line to cut-off. Otherwise, there’s never going to be an end and you’ll just eat into the time for later.

                      20. Leave Buffer Time In-Between

                      Don’t pack everything closely together. Leave a 5-10 minute buffer time in between each tasks. This helps you wrap up the previous task and start off on the next one.

                      More Time Management Techniques

                      Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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