Bose Ultra review: Spatialized sound make the open-ear headphones immersive

The appearance design of Bose Ultra is eye-catching, and the overall wearing experience is also very comfortable. The earbuds are equipped with Bose OpenAudio technology, which continues Bose’s immersive audio effect, allowing open-ear headphones to have full “presence”.

Bose Ultra Open Earbuds Specs and Features:
  • Bluetooth 5.3 with SBC/AAC codec
  • OpenAudio technology & Immersive audio mode
  • SimpleSync technology & Snapdragon sound technology
  • 4.5-7.5 hours playback of per charge (immersive on/off)
  • Charging case can charge earbuds fully 2 times
  • IPX4 waterproof rating (rain and sweat resistant)
  • $299 – Check latest price on Amazon US, Amazon Germany or other Amazon countries

Appearance Design, Comfort and Battery Life

The design of the Bose Ultra charging case is different from the previous Bose earbuds, and it is more compact and rounded. The surface of the charging case adopts a skin-friendly glossy texture, which is smooth and comfortable to the touch.

The Bose Logo is printed in the middle of the charging case, and below the logo is an indicator light to show the charging status. There is a circular bluetooth pairing button on the back. There is a USB-C charging interface at the bottom, which supports wired charging.

The appearance design of Bose Ultra earbuds breaks the design framework of the previous Bose earbuds series and adopts an ear clip design – the sound unit is connected to the battery through a flexible silicone band. At the same time, the flexible silicone band has good deformation ability, can adapt to different ear shapes when worn, and also ensures wearing stability.

The top of the battery unit on one side of the earbud is a multi-function button that can be used to perform operations such as volume +/-, switching tracks, and turning on/off immersive mode.

Thanks to the ear-clip design, the flexible silicone band at the end of the earclip has excellent ductility and can provide a lot of tolerance when worn. When wearing it, you only need to open the battery part, and then snap it into the auricle, and the earbuds will naturally “buckle” into the ears.

According to my actual test, the fit of Bose Ultra is very good, it will not fall off even when running, and it is no problem to wear it for a long time. Bose Ultra earbuds achieve an excellent balance between stability and comfort, and are suitable for long-term wear in a variety of scenarios.

Bose Ultra has a single battery life of up to 7.5 hours, and when used with the charging case, it can provide about 28 hours of battery life. However, it should be noted that the charging case does not support wireless charging. The earbuds can be used for 2 hours after 10 minutes of charging, and can be fully charged in one hour.

If you turn on immersive mode, the single listening time is shortened to 4.5 hours. Plus, the Bose Ultra has a standby time of up to 48 hours.

Connectivity, App Support and Controls

The connection method of Bose Ultra is basically the same as that of TWS earbuds. Turn on bluetooth in the device, find and connect “Bose Open Earbuds Ultra” to complete the pairing.

When the earbuds is successfully connected, it will also announce the name of the connected device in English, making the pairing process more ceremonial. However, the earbuds currently only supports English broadcasts. If your device has text in other languages, the earbuds will “selectively ignore” it.

After installing and opening the Bose Music App, click on the search interface and the APP will automatically search for nearby headphones. After searching, click Add to complete the connection between the APP and the earbuds.

It is worth mentioning that Bose Ultra is equipped with the second-generation Qualcomm S5 audio platform and supports Snapdragon Sound technology. Therefore, when using a compatible Qualcomm chip phone, a prompt to “Turn on Snapdragon Sound technology” will appear. At this point, you can enjoy a better experience brought by Snapdragon Sound, including aptX Adaptive technology (up to 24-bit 96kHz audio), high-resolution lossless audio, and clearer calls.

There are rich functions in the Bose Music App, including immersive audio on/off and static/dynamic mode selection. Plus, there are custom EQs, mode options, product updates, and more.

In addition, the button functions of the left/right earbuds can be customized on the APP, and the long press function can be changed to mode switching, immersive audio mode switching, bluetooth device switching, turning on the voice assistant, etc.

Sound Quality and Leakage

Although it is an open-ear earbuds, they still have the iconic Bose sound quality – strong bass, wide soundstage, and rich high-frequency details.

For the common problem of weak low-frequency in open-ear headphones, Bose Ultra supports immersive spatial audio functions (static mode and dynamic mode), which can greatly improve the soundstage performance of the earbuds and make the immersion and presence of the earbuds even better – makes up for the weak low-frequency.

The Bose Ultra’s sound leakage control also performs well. In a quiet environment such as an office, even if the volume is around 80%, the sound propagation is very accurate. Even passers-by within a radius of 50cm cannot hear the sound, so there is no need to worry about sound leakage. And 40% volume is enough in a quiet environment.

Also, Bose Ultra can also turn on the adaptive volume function in the app, which can adjust the earbuds volume according to the surrounding environment to prevent excessive volume from damaging the ears or excessive external noise affecting listening.


As the first open-ear headphones launched by Bose, the Bose Ultra open earbuds inherit many of the advantages of Bose headphones – such as unique appearance design, excellent sound quality, immersive audio, and more.

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