The advent of stereo Bluetooth was spurred not only by the influx of music players on cell phones, but also by the ever-increasing consumer desire to stream music wirelessly. We've seen quite a number of stereo Bluetooth headsets come our way to help the trend along, and there are devices like the Kyocera Wireless Music Gateway, which aims to stream music from your stereo Bluetooth device to a home stereo. Well Kyocera Wireless now has some competition, as Mobile Action has come up with the Voiis Stereo Wireless Music Gateway that utilizes the same stereo Bluetooth technology to stream music to and from a home stereo. You can use it to stream music from your home stereo to a stereo Bluetooth headset, or stream music from your PC or mobile phone to the home stereo. The Voiis Stereo Wireless Music Gateway is available for $35.99.
The Voiis Stereo Music Gateway consists of a few parts: the gateway dongle/antenna, a power adapter, and a couple of audio cables that you can connect to your home stereo. The antenna looks like what it is, with a large square base at the bottom and a slim tower on top of that. On the bottom front of the device is the Function button, as well as three LED lights: the Music Transmit light, the Bluetooth light, and the Music Receive light. The connectors to power and audio are on the back.
The device setup is pretty easy. Simply attach the gateway to a power source, and hook up the audio cables to the input/output of your home stereo. If you want to transmit music from your home stereo to a stereo Bluetooth headset, you'll have to press down the Function button for 3 seconds to put it into Music Transmit mode, which activates the Bluetooth pairing. Now you'll have to put your stereo Bluetooth headset in pairing mode, as well. This is where things can get a little tricky--you have to be sure to put both devices in pairing mode at around the same time, and since there's no display anywhere, you won't know if the devices are paired until you try it out.
We tested this out with our home stereo plus the Cardo S-2 stereo Bluetooth headset, and it worked great--we managed to stream music from the stereo to the headset without any noticeable flaws. What surprised us even more was that we could use the Voiis gateway with the iPod, as well. The Voiis comes with a two-way 3.5mm phone jack, which we inserted into our iPod Nano plus the Output slot on the Gateway. Similarly, we could then stream our iPod music to the Cardo S-2 headset.
If you press the Function button for 8 seconds, the Gateway will then switch to Music Receive mode. In this mode, the Voiis will stream music from a source (like a PC or a Bluetooth-enabled cell phone/music player) to the home stereo. Of course, like in the Music Transmit mode, you'll have to go through the Bluetooth pairing process in order for the devices to recognize each other.
There are a few things that we found a little lacking with the Voiis Stereo Gateway. Having one Function button for the two different modes seemed awkward sometimes, and we think having a couple more buttons may have worked better. Also, having a remote control for what is clearly a home entertainment device would have been a nice touch.
Otherwise though, the Voiis Stereo Wireless Music Gateway delivers on its promises. We were able to stream music to and from the home stereo, even from the iPod.