Warning: this post is laden with trademarked technology devices. Not because I like namedropping all my high-tech shit, but because it’s necessary to understand what works with what, and what doesn’t.
Also, I was going to take a pic of all my incompatible devices, but that will come later. I’ve already waited far too long to post this.
Not all Bluetooth is created equal.
Are created equal? Is Bluetooth singular or plural? How about this?
Not all Bluetooth devices are compatible.
Yes, there are variations of Bluetooth, and not all Bluetooth versions work with all devices. And here I thought Bluetooth was a standard. I call “Foul!”
The Saga of My Bluetooth Wars
It all began with Audible. I kept getting notifications from Amazon Prime that I had Audible credits and if I didn’t use them I’d lose them. So I decided to begin with Diana Gabaldon’s Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade. I love Lord John Gray from the Outlander universe, and I loved this particular novel when I read it last year. (It’s the book that piqued my interest in the m/m genre.)
Since my Fire (7) tablet came with Audible, I downloaded the book, hooked up my Bluetooth earphones (Powerbeats2) and began listening. Except the sound came from the tablet, not the earphones. I went to settings, turned on Bluetooth. It promptly found my Fitbit devices. (I have two [both of which I got with my credit card points]. But that’s another tech story.)
So I switched to my oldish Samsung tablet. (I use it primarily it to play a memory-hog game I’ve been playing for the past couple years because it has expandable memory; and to read via the Kindle app since it has a blue light filter. Once again, the tablet couldn’t find the earphones, although did find the Fitbits, as well as a television. That’s quite a feat since my tv is not smart. (I’m guessing it must have been a neighbor’s tv.)
Next, I tried my Bluetooth headphones. I didn’t hold out much hope for success since they’re older than the Powerbeats. I was right. They wouldn’t pair with either the Fire or the Samsung.
I knew both the Powerbeats and the Bludtooth headphones would connect to my antique iPad (3rd generation—complete with the old 30-pin connector!) because I’ve used both of them extensively in the past. So I was good to go!
The antique iPad couldn’t download the Audible app, because Audible requires iOS 10, and said iPad maxed out with iOS 9 and won’t upgrade any further.
So I tried the “wireless” earphones I’d bought last year and rarely used (because they’re a bitch to control and keep falling out of my ears). Surely their Bluetooth would work with the newer devices. Yes? Nope.
I tried resetting the Powerbeats. (The internet said this was an option for improving Bluetooth compatibility.) Guess what? Once reset, the earphones decided to not work. At all!
So I pulled out my wired headphones, sat on the sofa and listened to the beginning chapters (of Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade, in case you’ve forgotten where this story began). It’s restful, but the idea an audiobook is to able to listen while puttering around the house.
I could wire the headphones to my phone, but most of my pants don’t have pockets in which to put the phone. I could shove it down my shirt and lodge it in my bra. Yeah, that’d be comfortable. Or, I could crochet another phone holder with a strap to wear over my shoulder. (I’d made one for my old iPhone, but now I have a Samsung Note 8—big mistake, but that’s yet another tech story; suffice it to say it was on sale) and will have to make another cell phone cozy with lanyard.
But that will have to wait until I finish making the Christmas presents for my niece and her kids, which I only decided on this past week.