Automatica audio download system
$99 at automaticaweb.com
Lots of us plug our smartphones into the carís USB port, so we can listen to our favorite music downloads or podcasts during the commute. But the people at Automatica think theyíve got a better way--a phoneless device that downloads your tunes whenever youíre in wireless Internet range.
Automatica is an odd little device--a nearly featureless black box. You plug it into a PC or Mac to set it up and to provide it with power--thereís no battery inside. You install the necessary software on your computer, and set the Automatica to connect to your home or office Wi-Fi network. Then you program Automatica to download stuff from your favorite Internet cloud services, like Google Drive or Microsoft SkyDrive.
From now on, when you plug the Automatica device into a computer or your car, itíll connect to Wi-Fi and start downloading podcasts and tunes into its built-in memory. Itís got two gigabytes of available storage and a MicroSD slot for adding more. Once itís loaded up, just unplug Automatica, take it out to the car, plug it into the USB port and start listening.
If you park your car a block from home, itís hard to see much benefit in Automatica. But it could make sense for people who park within range of their home Wi-Fi or some other open Internet hotspot. In that case, Automatica will download fresh content while youíre at work or in bed. If thatís how you roll, Automatica might be worth a listen.
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