Share your tunes without DRM constraints

30 March 2007 No Comment Mike Evans

NoeStringsAttached MP3 player FM transmitter and receiver
You love the music stored in your MP3 player, but what about your mate’s? Want to hear what he’s listening to without the bother of copying MP3 files from one device to another? Better yet, why not listen to his tunes by just putting on a pair of headphones, without connecting them to his MP3 player?

That’s the what the new NoeStringsAttached device (and yes, it is spelt correctly!) will let you do. Developed by San Francisco teenager Kristyn Heath, NoeStringsAttached is an FM transmitter and receiver that plugs into any standard headphone jack, and either broadcasts the tunes over FM when in transmit mode, or receives the tunes from an MP3 player with its own NoeStringsAttached transmitter plugged in.

Although working on the same principles as the FM transmitters you can buy to broadcast your MP3 player’s tunes to your car stereo, the NoeStringsAttached device takes this idea one stage further by both transmitting and receiving, and by plugging in to any MP3 player via the standard headphone jack.

The NoeStringsAttached is so versatile, you can even plug it into a set of headphones and listen to another MP3 player without connecting the headphones to the player, effectively making the headphones wireless.

“It’s basically like you’re listening to a radio with headphones,” says NoeStringsAttached inventor Kristyn Heath.

Designed to be cheap (it’s aimed at 15-22 year olds) as well as flexible, NoeStringsAttached also overcomes the difficulties of DRM-restricted music sharing. Microsoft’s Zune, for example, comes with Wi-Fi to enable you to share your tunes wirelessly with another Zune player, but the receiving player can only play the tune three times before the DRM cuts in and forces you either to buy the tune or never hear it again. Effectively, DRM renders the Zune’s wireless sharing feature utterly useless.

With NoeStringsAttached, though, you’re broadcasting the tune from the originating Zune (or equivalent device), meaning the file itself is never copied anywhere – only the music is transferred, and there ain’t nothing DRM can do about that!

As cheap, flexible and DRM-avoiding music-sharing devices go, the NoeStringsAttached is unbeatable.

[Source: TechnologyReview]


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