Review: BlackBerry Music Gateway

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It is always a pleasure of mine to review a brand spanking new BlackBerry product.  With no further delay, lets take a look at the brand new BlackBerry Music Gateway from Research In Motion.

Unboxing
The video below shows what is included in the box. Included in the packaging is your BlackBerry Music Gateway, a charger, a 3.5mm AUX wire, and an RCA cable.



How Does It Work

The newly released BlackBerry Music Gateway uses Bluetooth technology, just like its predecessor, to stream music from your phone to your audio system. A brand new and very welcomed addition is the ability to use NFC to tap your smartphone for an instant connection.  The BlackBerry Music Gateway works with both BlackBerry Smartphones and Tablets. Also, it supports streaming from various apps like BBM Music, Pandora, 7digital, and Slacker Radio.  The device is actually a lot smaller and sleeker looking than the original.  It is quite simple to use, you just Tap (if you have an NFC enabled phone) or manually connect though Bluetooth and start enjoying your device’s music over those loud speakers.

The Good 
The BlackBerry Music Gateway is amazingly small which makes it very portable.  I used one in my car and in my house.  It is extremely easy to stream your music and volume by using your smartphone or tablet as a remote. The NFC tap is amazing and hasn’t failed once.  The BlackBerry Music Gateway works like it’s supposed to and the quality of the sound is great. I loved the ability to be around the house and being able to control my music from any room.

The Bad 
The Price seems fair, but not great. I believe RIM could have promoted this a lot more aggressively with a slightly more fitting price.  Another issue I encountered,which is expected, was rapid battery drain on my smartphone. I wish RIM could make it a little less battery consuming, but I understand it is constantly streaming so I can’t complain that much.

The Ugly
I am sad to say this, but the device was poorly engineered.  First issue I found is that the device needs to constantly be plugged in to a power outlet, which makes it less portable. Perhaps, RIM can engineer a BlackBerry Music Gateway with a rechargeable battery in the future. A second problem is that the AUX out is located right next to the charging port, which can create an interference.  I was hoping RIM would have avoided making these types of engineering mistakes.  It is a bit of an inconvenience when you have your BlackBerry Music Gateway in your car and need an extra car charger.

Bottom-line
I am a little torn about the BlackBerry Music Gateway.  It is my first love/hate relationship with a BlackBerry product.  If you have $49.99 to spare, then by all means I would suggest you get one.  Aside from some minor issues, the BlackBerry Music Gateway is still awesome and serves as a handy device for a music fanatic. The BlackBerry Music Gateway is available to purchase for $49.99 and you can pick it up at ShopBlackBerry.com.




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