Airplay, Bluetooth and how we’ll be listening to music in future

Since I switched to an iPhone a few years ago, I’ve bought a few iPod docks which are dotted about my house. This means that if I’m in the kitchen for example, I can just dock my phone and play music through the app of my choosing. Of late however, two of the three have broken, with the connector docks no longer working. Ironically both packed up at the same time, which happened to be when the iPhone 5 – with its new, smaller Lightning connector – was released.

The new connector was something of a dealbreaker for me. I now had two dock connectors that didn’t work, and hence was using the Aux input and a lead with both to play music. The notion of upgrading at some point to Apple’s latest proprietary connector was far from appealing – especially if they might prove as unreliable as my current hardware.

The docks themselves still work – and, I might add, sound great too. It is only the connector part that is broken; other than that they’re fine. So, rather than throw them out I looked for a means to still be able to use them, preferably wirelessly. So, I picked up a Logitech Bluetooth Receiver for the very reasonable sum of £23 and gave that a shot.

Verdict? Its fantastic. I can stream anything to them from my phone, tablets or laptop with no bother at all. Critically though, my Nexus 7 isn’t left out on this; as the method of connection is not a proprietary one limited to one company and its products, anything with Bluetooth can pipe audio to my docks. Weirdly, I feel like I’ve liberated them slightly.

For a long time now I’ve had an old laptop wired into my stereo system in our lounge. Its sole function is to stream Rdio, Spotify or other online audio. Now though, with this Logitech adapter it is redundant; all I need is the adapter and I can play audio straight from my device of choosing.

Using this new setup though made me realise something: this is how we’ll all be listening to music in future. Current thinking says we might have a setup not unlike my lounge one, or something like a Sonos setup; numerous web-connected terminals to play music through, with you maybe using an app on your mobile to control them remotely. That’s wrong. The reality is that all we need is a “dumb receiver” attached to speakers: the rest will be driven by the handset in your pocket. The handset will have the apps, receive the audio and then pipe it back out to wherever you want to hear it.

Or, in other words, pretty much what’s happening now in my house. I love it.

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One thought on “Airplay, Bluetooth and how we’ll be listening to music in future

  1. […] really worked for me. Airplay felt like a great option at one point, but its a total lock-in. So, as detailed in a previous post, I invested in a £20 Logitech bluetooth receiver and haven’t looked back. Beyond that though […]

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