Retro Bluetooth speaker swaps cassettes for your smartphone
We've recently seen several different examples of high-tech portable cassette players, but is audio tape really making a comeback? Perhaps not, which is where Pl8ty comes in – it uses your smartphone as the cassette.
Invented by Swiss musicians Jonathan Fiorentini and Ernesto Londino, Pl8ty is a Bluetooth speaker that looks like an old-school Sony Walkman. To use it, you just open the hinged front cover, stick your phone inside with the music app on, then close it and press the play button. The device's fast-forward, rewind and pause buttons also work, as does its volume wheel.
You can then share your music with the world via the built-in stereo speaker, or keep it to yourself by plugging your hard-wired headphones into the 3.5-mm output jack. An integrated clip lets you wear Pl8ty on your belt or waistband.
There's also an input jack, along with a USB-C port for charging the 3,200-mAh lithium-ion battery. That battery serves double duty as a power bank, keeping your smartphone running if its own battery runs out.
According to its designers, Pl8ty's sound quality features a clear balance between bass and treble. The device itself can accommodate iPhones 6 and up, a wide range of Samsung Galaxy models, or any other phone that fits within. That said, because the phone communicates with Pl8ty via Bluetooth, it doesn't have to go inside of it.
Should you be interested, Pl8ty is currently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign. A pledge of CHF 93 (about US$102) will get you one, when and if it reaches production. The planned retail price is CHF 179 (US$197).