In pictures: the UE Boom wireless speaker

We unbox Ultimate Ear's newest portable speaker

  • Ultimate Ears has a new speaker out -- the waterproof, battery-powered, Bluetooth-toting UE Boom. We got hold of one and took a look. The UE Boom comes packaged in a tall cylinder.

  • Take off the outer layer of cardboard and the cylinder starts to look appropriately mysterious.

  • Like some kind of secure container for a nuclear fuel rod, the UE Boom's packaging swings open to expose the cylindrical white speaker.

  • The speaker comes out easily, along with two accessory disks.

  • These accessory disks hold the 5V 2A USB charger -- good for juicing up your smartphone or tablet, too -- and a microUSB cable.

  • The speaker itself is designed to be used either vertically or horizontally, although vertical seems like the most logical way to place it. There's a power button up 'top', as well as a second button that toggles the Bluetooth wireless connection.

  • These buttons on the 'side' of the UE Boom are, simply enough, for controlling the speaker's volume. They're independent of the Bluetooth volume control that your smartphone or tablet has, too, so they are a handy volume boost (or attenuator).

  • A closer look at the top buttons. Not shown is the other end of the UE Boom, which has a 3.5mm headphone jack for direct audio connection, the microUSB port for recharging, and a clip for attaching the Boom to whatever you want to clip it to.

  • A closer look at the side buttons.

  • When the UE Boom is placed on its side, a weight ensures the volume control is always facing upwards.

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