By Nate Adcock updated on 06/30/2013
Why do companies do it? (Make new stuff that is no longer compatible with old stuff?!) While there's some truth to emerging technology outdating old products, companies also do it to get you to spend more money. Take all those old 30-pin speaker docks out there in iPhoneland, we bought them up like hot cakes, right? Now, many older iPhones and iPods have turned into dust-collecting paperweights and the compatible docks are all but obsolete.
But there is a gadget that can transform your speaker into shiny new tech yet again! The Dolry, made by Swedish manufacturer C4 Electronics, is an extremely ingenious Wi-Fi adapter that connects to your old 30-pin dock and turns it into an AirPlay (or DLNA) compatible wireless powerhouse!
I know what you are going to say. Why not just buy an Apple adapter for $30? You can do that, but all it lets you do is dock your new iPhone with your old dock, which may not fit or look right. The Dolry is way cooler. You literally take it out of the box, slap it onto your old speaker dock, and it starts up as a Wi-Fi access point in direct mode. Its trim form should fit easily onto any existing dock.
Search in your Wi-Fi settings and connect directly to the Dolry to start playing your tunes. Finito, done, finished! No fancy setup to your home wireless or anything. Since the Dolry offers Wi-Fi instead of lossy Bluetooth, you get full AirPlay sound quality and range. Here is the second great thing: Say your wife gets an Android phone (wives are often cool like that), then even her phone will work with your old dock. Awwww, Snap! We just schooled your old tech!
I tested the Dolry all around my house (as I do with every speaker system I test), and it worked flawlessly. The sound on the speaker had to be turned up a bit, but I had no problems getting it to work with two of my super old speaker docks, even with an iHome Wi-Fi speaker (in dock mode). It not only was mega-awesome and worked with my new iPad mini and older iPod touch and iPhones, but also connected via the free Dolry app to my home Wi-Fi network. I didn't have a dropout in any of the rooms in my three-story townhouse, even in the basement.
If you haven't connected with AirPlay before, it is pretty straightforward. Once it's connected to Wi-Fi, you simply select the player output icon in the lower right corner of your player application and select the HiFi Stone as your wireless output device. The sound will pause for a moment while it queues up the wireless stream to the dock but should resume as if locally connected. The Dolry will work with any Airplay-supported streaming app. In the future, it will offer Wi-Fi streaming stations for EU and US stations.
Dolry just plain works great, but now for the bad news... Dolry doesn't yet sell direct in the United States. However, you can still grab one from Amazon! Even though it is a bit pricey for an add-on, this is a useful and transformative accessory, and one I give a big iPhone Life stamp of approval!
Turns old speaker docks into AirPlay streaming speakers;
Small, light, and easy to install and use.
Not available direct in US.