Twitter user Ben Morgan (@bmorg) found that Alexa has stopped working entirely on their Megablast speakers, despite trying a factory reset – and they're not alone:
@ultimateears what have you done to the megablast firmware that's caused Alexa to just stop working? It's been generally fine for a year and suddenly it won't work at all even after a factory reset. Not happy.August 30, 2020
Mine are still broken. I’ve had them over a year, they’ve been great until this. We need @ultimateears to fix their #firmware. I can still stream over Bluetooth but nothing from Alexa despite the app saying it’s connected 😢 The silence from UE is very annoying!!! 🤬September 10, 2020
In a statement sent to TechRadar, Ultimate Ears acknowledged the issue, saying: "We are aware of the issue and are working to find a solution. We'll update you as soon as we have a solution."
The audio company, which is well known for its portable and waterproof speakers, is still yet to confirm why Alexa is failing to work on the UE Megablast – while it has been speculated that a firmware update is to blame, we've been unable to verify this. In any case, we'll be sure to update this article as soon as Ultimate Ears releases a solution.
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What can I do if my speaker stops working?
One of the biggest calling cards of the UE Megablast is that it offers voice assistant smarts from Alexa, which means you can use the portable speaker to control your smart home devices, as well as play your tunes on the move.
Voice assistant integration is still relatively rare in portable speakers, as it usually requires Wi-Fi connectivity as well as Bluetooth – but smart speakers you can take on the move are becoming increasingly common as models like the Sonos Move grow in popularity.
While Ultimate Ears is yet to offer a fix for the problem, there are a few things you can try if your speaker is failing to work with Alexa.
It's worth checking that you have the latest software installed on your speaker – to do this, head to the Ultimate Ears speaker app, ensuring the speaker is connected to your device via Bluetooth. Once there, tap on 'More', and you'll be able to see whether there are any updates available to download.
Of course, it's still unclear whether a firmware update is to blame for the Alexa problems in the first place – and these updates are irreversible, so if you're not experiencing issues at the moment, it could be worth waiting for Ultimate Ears to confirm the cause of the problems before committing to a software update.
You could also try a factory reset of your speaker (though some users have reported that this hasn't solved the issue with Alexa). This will wipe all the settings on your Megablast, including the Bluetooth memory, Wi-Fi settings, and your Amazon / Alexa credentials.
To do this, hold down the volume '–' and power buttons simultaneously for six seconds – you'll then hear a tone that indicates that the reset is complete.
You'll then need to turn your speaker back on using the power button, and go through the setup process.