EXCLUSIVE: JB Hi-Fi is finally set to become a Bose dealer after the company sought for several years to get access to the US brand in Australia.
Bose home theatre and sound products will start appearing in JB Hi-Fi stores shortly, according to CEO Terry Smart.
The move is set to upset several specialist dealers who supported Bose when the US company demanded that the specialist Hi Fi and home automation channel upgrade their in-store Bose merchandisers to a new blue system. Several dealers, including Len Wallis in Sydney, chose not to invest in the Bose system, dropping the US brand for alternate systems.
Currently, both David Jones and Myer sell Bose product in Australia, with insiders telling ChannelNews that the two department stores combined “shift very little volume”.
Smart says: “We have wanted the Bose brand in our stores for several years. This is a great opportunity for us.”
Initially, Bose product will be sold via JB Hi-Fi stores without the merchandising walls, but over time, the walls will be rolled out to their stores across Australia, he says.
Len Wallis from Len Wallis Audio, who for years was one of Bose’s leading specialist dealers, says: “The move by Bose to appoint JB Hi-Fi will come as a blow to several Bose dealers who invested in the move to new in-store merchandising systems”. Bose executives were not available to comment.
Recently, Bose launched the SoundLink Mini Bluetooth speaker and the Quiet Comfort 20 in-ear active-noise-cancelling in-ear headphones – both will be sold by JB Hi-Fi.
The SoundLink Mini is 5.1cm high 18cm wide and 5.9cm deep and comes in an aluminium-encased surround.
Bose has managed to increase the sound from the small unit by using dual opposing passive bass radiators to boost the low notes from the SoundLink Mini’s two new custom-designed, high-performance transducers (speakers).
The placement of the radiators means that audio from the rear is almost as good as from the front, and they cancel each other out, so the Mini doesn’t vibrate off the table.
The speaker will be available next mnoth at JB Hi-Fi stores, with a reccomended retail price of $249.
Also set to go on sale in JB Hi Fi stores in September are the QC20 noise-cancelling earphones.
Bose claims that the new model “rivals the performance of any headphone”.
The earphones use two microphones in each earbud – one measuring the sound outside and one inside. A chip on a small and light module on the cable creates an equal and opposite wave in a fraction of a millisecond.
An Aware Mode allows users to hear outside noises, while still keeping their music playing.
The QC20s will be available in JB Hi Fi stores from September at a price of $399.