Product snapshot: JBL PowerUp wireless speaker

Charge your Nokia Lumia and play music wirelessly with JBL’s NFC speaker dock

If you’ve got one of Nokia’s new Lumia Windows Phones — the 520, the 620, the 720, the 820, or the 920 — then you’re able to use a huge range of Nokia and third-party accessories. JBL’s PowerUp is a speaker dock with built-in NFC and a wireless charging coil, so every new Lumia (except the 520) can be made to work with it entirely wirelessly.

The JBL PowerUp is a Bluetooth speaker, so technically it can be paired with any smartphone that’s got Bluetooth built-in — and that’s almost any phone made within the last decade. This makes it suitable for a far wider range of devices than only Nokia Lumia phones.

The PowerUp comes in three different colours — white, black, and an electric blue. All three look good, as does the design of the speaker itself. Finished in a rubberised plastic, the PowerUp is a simple oval-shaped shape that’s reminiscent of an old-school clock radio. The box’s front is a colour-coded metal grille, hiding stereo 2.5-inch full-range speakers.

If you’ve got a phone that has both NFC and wireless charging &8212; ideally one of Nokia’s new Lumias with inbuilt wireless charging or a wireless charging cover — all you need to do is place your phone on the top of the JBL PowerUp. The phone and speaker will do the rest — wireless charging starts straight away, and NFC sets up a direct Bluetooth connection for music and audio playback.

There are a few caveats here. We tested the system with another NFC- and wireless charging-compatible smartphone, the Google Nexus 4, and found that wireless charging wouldn’t work. It’s likely that JBL and Nokia have collaborated on a wireless charging that isn’t exactly compliant with the QI standard. NFC and Bluetooth worked just fine though.

From our time with the JBL PowerUp, it sounds pretty good for a speaker of its small size. It’s got a fair bit of low-end punch thanks to the full-range speakers, and reasonable clarity for high-frequency notes. Being a predominantly wireless speaker playing over the lossy Bluetooth codec, it isn’t going to be as clear as an analog-3.5mm-connected speaker, or one playing music over Wi-Fi, but it’s more than enough for a bedroom or office cubicle.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Campbell Simpson

Campbell Simpson

PC World
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?