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Bluetooth Stereo Roundup

Bluetooth Stereo Roundup for Palm OS and Windows Mobile Smartphones.  + Latest version of Softick Audio Gateway delivers even better A2DP and AVRCP Bluetooth Stereo wireless audio streaming for Treo and Centro.

Bluetooth Stereo RoundupThere’s no doubt that Palm’s new Treo 800w is generating quite a bit of envy among existing Treonauts who like me have been yearning to get such a full-featured high-end business smartphone in their hands for some time. 

Those lucky enough to be on Sprint (Verizon and AT&T versions coming in September) now have the opportunity to get a device offering among others built-in WiFi, GPS, ultrafast EvDO data connectivity, a 2.0 megapixel camera and Bluetooth 2.0 (see Treo 800w specifications).

One of the standard functions found on the Windows Mobile Treo 800w (as well as the Treo 750 and 700w|wx) is also support for Advanced Audio Distribution Profile support (A2DP) and Audio/Video Remote Control Profile (AVRCP) capabilities on your smartphone. 

Palm OS smartphones such as the Centro or Treo 680 for their part do not benefit from Bluetooth Stereo support out of the box but it can nonetheless be added by getting the excellent and bestselling Softick Audio Gateway software – an application which quickly, simply and cheaply adds A2DP and AVRCP functionality to Palm OS devices.

What does all of this mean?  Well, it means that using your Windows Mobile Treo smartphone or Softick Audio Gateway software installed on your Palm OS smartphone you will be able to wirelessly control and stream music from your device to an assortment of Bluetooth accessories specifically designed to support wireless audio.

Motorola S9

First you have an array of Bluetooth Stereo Headphones that allow you to move around freely while music is streamed from your device wirelessly.  The added benefit is that all Bluetooth stereo headphones offer built-in controls to Play/Pause, adjust Volume Up/Down and Next/Previous Track as well as naturally Call Answer/End buttons since you can make and receive calls just as you would with a standard Bluetooth Headset.

Next you have Bluetooth Stereo Adapters such as the unique BlackBerry Remote Stereo Gateway that allows you to wirelessly stream music from your smartphone to your Hi-Fi system – effectively transforming your device into a remote control for all your music.

Remote Audio Gateway

In my case, I have created a setup (image above) for this remote stereo gateway in the living room at home using a spare Treo 680 smartphone (with Softick Audio Gateway installed) combined with a 16GB SDHC memory card and a Palm Cradle Kit to keep my device charged while the gateway itself is plugged into a high-end Yamaha amplifier and Jamo speakers.  Overall it’s been a setup that has never failed to impress friends and it consistently delivers excellent audio quality (people actually can’t believe that it sounds this good coming wirelessly from a phone).

BlueAnt M1 Stereo Speakers

Finally there are Bluetooth Stereo Speakers with the absolutely terrific new BlueAnt M1 Bluetooth Stereo Speakers (which I will review in detail next week) that offers not only a superbly powerful (28 Watt RMS power with 12 Watt RMS internal subwoofer) speaker system for the home or office but also for the outdoors thanks to a built-in rechargeable battery that lasts for up to 10 hours of streaming music or a staggering 1500 hours standby.  I had been looking for ages for just such a solution for my barbecues in the garden, picnics in the park and days at the beach – it’s not cheap but the build quality is outstanding.

Softick Audio GatewayPlease note: most of the above Bluetooth Stereo accessories will be listed as “Not Compatible” with your Palm OS smartphone in the Treonauts Store but this is just to ensure that people who are not aware of the Softick Audio Gateway software do not inadvertently buy a product that will not work out of the box with their smartphone.  Therefore, if you do have Softick Audio Gateway installed on your Palm OS smartphone you will like me be able to use any one of these Bluetooth Stereo accessories without any problem at all.

Also, following my Softick Audio Gateway review a couple of months ago I would like to point out that the latest version 1.22 of the software has not only fixed connection problems on some devices but it’s also added Quick Launch capabilities with a convenient thumbnail linking to the various media players that you may have installed on your smartphone (in my case above this includes Pocket Tunes Deluxe, Kinoma, TCPMP and CorePlayer). 

Finally, please also note that because Softick Audio Gateway uses a lot of system resources, when the software is active your Palm OS smartphone may feel a little slower than usual – this is perfectly normal and should not interfere with any other tasks that you perform.

Overall, whether you have a Windows Mobile or Palm OS Treo or Centro I hope that like me you’ll find plenty of fun and convenient ways to exploit the Bluetooth Stereo capabilities of your smarpthone with headsets, adapters or speakers – I use these nearly every day and absolutely love it.

Separately, if you’re looking for essential accessories for your smartphone here are my recommendations below.

6 Essential Centro Accessories

  1. Centro screen protectors: easy protection for your delicate touchscreen.
  2. Centro stereo adapter: essential if you want to listen to music on the go using a standard 3.5mm headset of your choice.
  3. Retractable Sync & Charge Cable: simple, extremely practical with the retractable system that avoids the mess of cable and terrific value.
  4. Microfiber Cleaning Cloth: keep it in your pocket every day and use it to quickly wipe those smudges and face oils from your touchscreen.
  5. SanDisk MobileMate SD+ Reader: if like me you cannot live without a high-capacity memory card then I can’t more highly recommend this small and light pocket card reader.
  6. Centro Stylus

6 Essential Treo Accessories

  1. Treo screen protectors
  2. Treo stereo adapter
  3. Retractable Synch & Charger Cable
  4. Microfiber Cleaning Cloth
  5. SanDisk MobileMate SD+ Reader
  6. Treo Stylus

Treonauts always listen to the world in stereo

Posted by Andrew on July 17, 2008 at 11:27 AM

Treo Bluetooth A2DP Headphones

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by Rico | Jul 17, 2008 4:19:34 PM

Thank you for the review!

(And a bigger Thank you for not using the word "Albeit" in this review!)

by WA Mackizo | Jul 19, 2008 5:07:16 PM

Did i get you right? I own the 700wx and it does not has do A2dp.

by dmm | Jul 21, 2008 6:16:47 PM

The 750 was the first Windows Mobile Treo to come with with A2DP loaded. The 700wx doesn't have it out of the box, though there may be something like Softick Audio Gateway available.

by James | Jul 28, 2008 1:03:10 PM

I'm looking to connect my treo 680 via bluetooth to my new car audio system. The car has SYNC and connects via bluetooth for hands free phone connectivity, but I would like to stream my mp3's on the Treo's SD card directly to SYNC's BT audio. I assume this software is teh missing piece to access and stream music on the card.

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