Despite excellent hardware, however, the company falters on the hardware design of the dock itself. The connector sits on a spring to accommodate a wide range of case sizes, but the rotating hinge makes it difficult to properly seat and remove a device without feeling like it's about to break off in your hand.
Once you establish a connection with a device, the UE Air will remember the handshake and recognize you the next time you walk into the door. When you're ready to listen to music, just press the up arrow button to the right of your phone's music player and select the UE Air.
You may notice that the speaker takes a second or two to buffer your song selections and volume adjustments on your phone/tablet, but you should know that this is a symptom of AirPlay itself, not Logitech. If you're a frequent track-changer, you'll likely prefer the snappy response of a Bluetooth speaker, especially if you purchase one with similar sound quality such as the SuperTooth Disco.
Ethernet aside, you actually have a third wireless connectivity option if you don't own an AirPlay device. The instruction booklet details a slightly more complicated method that involves navigating to an IP configuration page in a Web browser, selecting your network, and entering a password. Once the UE Air finishes a reboot, you should be hooked up.
While the SuperTooth Disco and other Bluetooth speakers are ideal for an individual auditory experience, the UE Air really shines in a group setting like a party or a barbecue where it can flex its powerful double rear-mounted subwoofers. The unit can blast music at astoundingly loud volumes that will likely turn you deaf before blowing out, and your sweet tones will capably reach across large, open spaces thanks to the dual tweeters in front.
The bass on The Dream's "Fast Car" blasts out of the introduction with gusto, and the UE Air keeps tempo with clean thuds and a satisfying rumble that complements the lower spectrums of the synthesizer solos. As stated, the UE Air iOS app lets you add incremental bass and treble boosts, but the quality of the wireless stream achieves such sonic gains over Bluetooth that there's really no need to fiddle with micro-adjustments.
The Logitech UE Air speaker features impressive audio performance thanks to the AirPlay wireless standard. It makes an excellent bookshelf speaker, but be prepared to pay a premium for the relatively new technology. If you simply can't get past the price, however, a Bluetooth speaker like the SuperTooth Disco may fall more within your reach.