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Bose releases new in-ear headphones, portable Bluetooth speaker

Bose has announced the release of its first in-ear active noise cancelling headphones, along with a compact, portable Bluetooth speaker.

The QuietComfort 20, a pair of in-ear active noise cancelling headphones, and the Soundlink Mini, a portable Bluetooth speaker that uses the A2DP Bluetooth profile to wirelessly stream audio, were announced globally overnight.

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The products will go on sale in Australia in September and July, respectively.

The QuietComfort 20 headphones debut a new feature called Aware mode, which is activated by pushing a button on the cord's Y-joint.

The feature keeps the music playing but allows surrounding noise to be heard, preventing users from having to remove the headphones to listen to background noise.

Bose Australia's Director of Marketing and Bose Direct, Max Sides, said the company believes the QuietComfort 20 headphones rival the performance of any headphone on the market, including larger over-the-ear models.

"We believe they [the QuietComfort 20's] rival the performance of any headphone, any headphone," he said at a media launch in Sydney.

"Today there are over 700 brands of headphones available, with an even greater 6000 different models available, so customers are spoilt for choice. But we believe the QC 20s are a revolutionary headphone."

Bose says the headphone use a number of new technologies that resulted in the company filing for "more US patents than any other headphone" in the company's history.

The headphones use a two microphone system to provide active noise cancellation and also include Bose's proprietary StayHear+ ear tips which claim to passively block noise.

The headphones come with a rechargeable battery that provides up to 16 hours of power.

Bose also debuted a new portable Bluetooth speaker called the SoundLink Mini.

It weighs just 680g, has an anodized aluminium casing and comes with a charging cradle.

The company claims the SoundLink Mini uses two passive radiators and two custom transducers to produce "better sound than any speaker of its size".

The Bose QuietComfort 20 headphones will retail for $399 when they are released in Australia in September.

They are available in two different models, with the QC20 designed for Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phone devices, and the QC20i designed for Apple's iPhone, iPad and iPod products.

The SoundLink Mini Bluetooth speaker will be released in July and will sell for $249.

Bose will also sell two accessories for the product including a soft cover in three colours ($29.95) and a travel bag ($54.95).


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