Did you know that Brookstone — the heir apparent to Sharper Image’s title of “that random chain of stores in malls that sells vaguely technology-related goods and is inexplicably still in business,” — also makes its own branded line of speakers?
It’s true! And now the company is releasing new versions of its Big Blue Studio and Big Blue Party models, which add integrated Google Chromecast support. Otherwise, the two models are fairly standard wireless speakers, and are nearly unchanged from the previous, Bluetooth-only versions.
Aside from the addition of the built-in Chromecast functionality and Wi-Fi, the biggest change is price. The updated Big Blue Studio costs $129.99 (compared to the original model’s $99.99 price tag) while the waterproof Big Blue Party is $249.99 (versus the older version’s $179.99), making it cheaper to simply buy the older model and just add a $35 Chromecast Audio, but much like the decision to shop at Brookstone, it’s your call.