Remember the pre BoAt era? When all we had was the black wired headset that came bundled in with the smartphone. Remember how it used to get tangled up like a cobweb if kept in the pocket even for a second. Those thread-like black wires, useless collar clips that broke after one use, earbuds made of plastic, and that too without any silicon buds. We never complained about the flat sound profile and negligible bass but BoAt spoiled us all.
Back in the day when BoAt decided to introduce a range of earphones and headphones in the mid-range price segment, the Indian consumer was thrilled by the variety and quality offered on budget. The market at that time operated at two extremes. At one end of the spectrum, it has cheap, ugly, and bad-sounding earphones from local brands that were sold offline for less than 200 rupees.
On the other hand, there were expensive, studio-level sound gear from brands like Sony, JBL, and Sennheiser available in the premium segment above 5000 rupees.
BoAt was the first successful brand to bring a blend of premium features, durable build, good sound profile, and affordable prices to Indian consumers. It certainly had the first-mover advantage but that is not what the end consumer cares about today.
Following BoAt, a lot of other brands as well as startups tried to copy their strategy by providing quality products at affordable prices. A lot of tech giants like Xiaomi, realme, and JBL also introduced good products at lower prices which is amazing for Indians but bad news for BoAt.
A lot of startups like noise defy and dizo also followed suit and got some success. The brand that has reached closest to BoAt in terms of product is Boult. I have tried and reviewed a lot of audio products in the past and in my experience, Boult surpasses BoAt in many areas. The internet is divided, but the consumer is happy because the ongoing rivalry between defending champions BoAt and talented fresher Boult increases the competition in the market and hence decreases the price of good earphones.
Before proceeding further check out this all new updated table of the comparison between boult vs boAt
Great sound profile with decent bass
Great sound profile with better bass than BoAt
Superior build quality
Cannot withstand rough usage even in the short term
Branded as the cool brand in budget and mid-range segment
Branded as the most value for money brand
Door step service available for products in warranty
You have to courier/deliver the product to the service center yourself to claim warranty
To sum it up for boult vs boAt, we decided to boil down our experiences with both the brands and compare them into 5 different categories:
- Pricing and range of products
- After-sales service
The most important thing about a car is how fast it goes, everything else is extra. Similarly, the most important thing about a pair of earphones is their sound profile or in simple terms, how well they sound. For Indians though, sound profile=bass. Well, then let’s start it the Indian way.
The BoAt became what it is today because of the heavy and thumpy bass it provided in all of its products. The product designing team at BoAt knew that Indians are hooked to bass so they gave them what they wanted. Bass in all BoAt products is boosted and enhanced to match the preference of Indian customers. This however overshadows other important aspects of its sound profile but that does not seem to bother the fanbase.
Bass in BoAt products was the best until Boult arrived. This is a matter of debate but in my experience, I have found Boult products to have much heavier and smoother bass as compared to BoAt.
For example, Boult bassbuds Oakwood, the 400 rupees earphones that have earbuds made up of wood instead of plastic, have one the heaviest bass I have ever witnessed with 12mm drivers. If you play bass boosted songs at full volume in these bassbuds Oakwood and gently place your finger on one of the earbuds, you can feel them vibrate.
Conclusively, BoAt products have rich bass but Boult products are outstanding when it comes to heavy and thumpy bass.
A majority of the Indian user base does not care about vocals in the sub-1000 rupees price bracket but it matters in case you go through a break-up and get addicted to Arijit Singh.
Both BoAt and Boult have a very similar frequency pattern where lows are decent but highs are spoiled. The disruption in highs can only be noticed while using a high-quality audio source like a PC or laptop.
Talking about the stereo separation between left and right earbuds, both the brands do well here although Boult does have a slight edge. This slight edge is not noticed while listening to music but while watching movies on Netflix or prime. The audio quality on these streaming services is high and therefore minute differences between the two brands can be seen.
In simple terms, the sounds coming from left and right seem more distinguished and farfetched while using Boult products as compared to BoAt.
Overall, in terms of sound, Boult outperforms BoAt by a margin.
After a critical evaluation in the sound segment, BoAt is all set to smash Boult in terms of build quality. The build quality of Boult products is simply not good enough to be subjected to rough usage. The flat wire used by BoAt in its wired earphones is a huge success over the thin braided cables used by Boult.
This drawback in Boult products is even further highlighted by the fact that Boult claims to have Kevlar reinforced braided cables in all its commercials. The bassbuds Oakwood mentioned above were not functional after 6 months of medium rough usage which is a disappointment when compared to my BoAt rockers 255 which lasted more than 2 years even after extremely rough usage.
The L-shaped connector that Boult provided instead of perpendicular connectors is a sweet add-on and really helps while playing games or watching movies in landscape mode.
Another important thing is color, plastic components in Boult products tend to fade and lose color after a month of use. This is extremely noticeable in the inline microphone or on the exterior of earbuds.
BoAt on the other hand does a better paint job than Boult and thus clearly emerges as a winner in this category.
The pricing strategy of brands should be compared based on the price of an average product offered by the brand. This product should have all the USPs of the brand. It should meet the standard quality level of the brand’s other products and should not be a product on the extreme ends of the price spectrum specially launched to alter the pricing image of the brand.
A decent, average-price and quite popular product of Boult like the bassbuds X1 can be bought for as low as Rs 299. X1 is one of the best-selling products of all time by Boult. It has the signature heavy bass and classic Boult sound profile. It has metal earbuds and water resistance IPX5 too. Other popular models by Boult include bassbuds X1 storm and bassbuds loops that cost Rs 299 and Rs 348 respectively.
Boult is indeed popular in the lower budget segment with the above-mentioned models being the best sellers for Boult even though it offers some expensive products. BoAt on the other hand is dominant in the mid-range segment and offers more products above Rs 500. So it is clear that BoAt is an expensive brand as compared to Boult and it is justified given the experience and turnover BoAt has.
A decent BoAt earphone that qualifies as an average BoAt product starts at Rs 499 with the bassheads 225 or 242 although there are bassheads 100 coming in at Rs 399, I don’t consider the entry-level earphones with a plastic build and light bass to be an average BoAt product and these are some of the best earbuds under 1000 INR.
4. Branding and range of products offered
As the social media culture has developed, the image of the product you have is more important than the features your product has. An iPhone from 4 years ago is more attractive than the latest android flagship because Apple has a brand image of luxurious products. Similarly in the market of sound products, Sony, Sennheiser, and JBL are considered premium.
In the budget segment, however, BoAt has the best brand image of them all and that reflects in its pricing as mentioned above. Boult is still a relatively unknown brand that only enthusiasts tend to know about and even they consider it cheaper when compared with Boult or noise.
Unlike Boult, BoAt also offers a wide range of products in almost all price segments. The list of BoAt products starts at 399 with bassheads 100 and goes to Rs 22000 with Aavante 1800 soundbar.
The BoAt also offers products like portable Bluetooth speakers, smartwatches, and premium headphones like rockerz 600 and 400. It also offers premium ANC (active noise canceling) and low latency TWS earbuds like airdopes 701 ANC at Rs 4999.
Talking about marketing, both brands have a similar vision, which is to appeal to the younger audience in the age group of 16-24. The boat has many youth icons as its brand ambassador like Kiara Advani, Hardik Pandya, Diljit Dosanjh, and Neha Kakkar. The BoAt also has a bigger marketing budget thanks to its higher sales which enables it to launch big advertisements and sponsor events.
Boult on the other hand is significantly smaller both in terms of sales and reach. The boat also has young celebrities as its brand ambassadors like Vicky Kaushal and Kriti Sanon but the difference in marketing budget shows.
Overall, given the money and time BoAt has invested in building its brand has paid off well and Boult is still in the process of making it big.
5. After-sales service
An ignored yet important point while comparing to product-based companies is their after-sales service. It helps to evaluate which brand is more likely to help you out in case your product is damaged or needs servicing.
BoAt yet again outperforms Boult due to its sheer size and user base. Both brands are regularly opening new service centers across India but by a rough comparison, BoAt is far ahead in this game. Almost all tier 1 and tier 2 cities are covered by BoAt and if your city is not covered by BoAt yet, they offer a doorstep service policy with no hidden charges.
Boult on the other hand does not have enough service centers and in case your city isn’t covered by Boult and you need assistance in regards to a Boult product that has a valid warranty, you will have to courier the product yourself to their nearest service center which basically means the warranty on Boult products is useless.
Conclusion – Boult vs BoAt
This boult vs boAt article is came to conclusion that both BoAt and Boult are offering some great products at great pricing and you should choose one of them depending upon your needs and budget. If you prefer bass and have a low budget, Boult would be a better option for you. On the other hand if you want durable build quality with great bass, after-sales service but slightly higher pricing, BoAt would be a better option.