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Kubuntu 11.10 and My JamBox

Earlier this week I was the lucky winner of one of the Phandroid Happy Holidroid Contests. The contest I won provided me the Amazon Kindle Fire, a JamBox by JawBone, a pair of Isotoner Smartouch Goves, a $30 gift certificate for the Seidio Online Store, and a zeemote bluetooth gaming controller for mobile devices. Not to shabby. Unfortunately for me, but fortunately to some lucky woman I know, the Isotoner gloves were women’s. If they were large enough, I would rock the pinkness. The Kindle Fire isn’t to shabby either, though it is one hell of a restrictive device, even rooted. Hopefully that will change as soon as a solid ICS build is available. The zeemote is pretty cool actually for some FPS, racing, and other games on a mobile device. The JamBox, is damn nice.

Jawbone JamBox Image

At first, I wasn’t sure if I was even going to like the JamBox. I really only listen to tunes on the train or walking around during a commute. I figured I would check it out, and if I didn’t like it, Craigslist/Amazon/Ebay it. After a little research I found out you are really restricted to the OS’ you can use to configure and get it setup initially. Windows XP (32-bit only), Vista, or 7 and Mac OS X are the only ones supported. I have that crap developer preview of Windows 8 on a machine, so I tried it. Hell no that didn’t work. Windows 8 couldn’t figure out what to do with it. Googling for help on that didn’t even result in a single thing. So, after borrowing a computer with Windows, I got it setup.

It has some pretty cool features. You can go with a wired connection with it or bluetooth. With the Kindle Fire I had to go the wired route, because Amazon has that thing locked down like Blagojevich will be soon. The sound out of it was impressive. Next I paired it via bluetooth to my phone and once again it was impressive. Speakerphone on it rocks, and just by pushing a button it will make the call, hold, mute, you name it. Next I wondered if it would work with Kubuntu.

So I enabled bluetooth on my laptop, set the JamBox to pairing mode, had Kubuntu search for it, and boom, it connected. Kubuntu even knew to add it as an audio device. To test it, I fired up Google Music and started playing. Hrmm, no sound out of it, just my laptop speakers. After playing around with System Settings and telling Kubuntu to prefer the JamBox, all worked, and worked well. The laptop speakers mute when using the JamBox, and when I shut off the JamBox the speakers on the laptop go back to playing the sound, and vice versa. I started walking around with it while LMFAO Party Rock was going and doing the dance around the house. I kept walking, and before you knew it, I was outside with it making my neighbors laugh. I then realized, damn, bluetooth has a range further than I ever thought. I was probably close to 50 feet away from my laptop, which was upstairs in the office, while I was outside.

The sound from the JamBox blows the laptop speakers out of the water. The ability to switch on different sound boosters is nice as well. The bass is good, the sound is crisp, and it is loud. As I write this, Google Music is shuffling between Gojira, Lamb of God, and more. I think I will keep this bad boy, as it is useful. Oh, and I have my phone and laptop paired with it now. So if I get a phone call, I can answer it through the JamBox and talk away. Rock on!

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