So like most people, I’ve got an old phone. Mine isn’t an iPhone though (yes, chastise away fanboys), but I’d like to use it for something. I decided to set it up with airplay, so I could play my iTunes library on my iMac synced up with my living room surround sound. Not a bad reuse for an old Motorola.
Step 1: Factory Reset
First, I factory reset my device. I had a bunch of personal data on it, and this was going to be a community tool. I didn’t need people accessing all my goods. So I did a factory reset:
Settings > Privacy > Factory Data Reset
This took about 5 minutes, and I was was up and running with a new, clean version of Gingerbread on my Droid… or was I?
Step 2: Verizon Hates You
My phone happened to be on the Verizon network, and they require that you activate any new device over their network. This is done through a call to their help center. Interesting, huh? So how can you use a device just over wifi? I figured I’d call them and see. A transcript of said correspondance:
VZ: Hello, this is (insert name of person you aren’t too fond of here). Can I get the number of the phone you are setting up?
Me: Hello. I’m setting up a phone over wifi. I’ve moved my number to a new phone, and did a factory reset on my old phone to use over my wifi network.
VZ: You will need to attach a number to this phone to use over the Verizon network sir.
Me: But as I’ve said, I already have a phone on Verizon. I’d like to bypass your activation and use the phone without a plan.
VZ: You can not use your phone without activation sir.
Me: Well then, I guess we are done here.
So apparently I cannot use the device I paid good money for. Interesting business plan Verizon. Well, now it was time to do the real work. A quick search gave me this gem of a tip. Apparently by tapping the activation screen in a clockwise direction, you can bypass it altogether. I wonder if the Verizon rep knew that?
Step 3: AirBubble
Now that I was able to actually use my phone, I setup my Google account, and downloaded the app AirBubble. Once installed, it showed up as an airplay device in my iTunes (see top image). Now I could play my music to just my computer, just the phone, or both. Easy as pie.
One other note: After hooking my phone into my surround sound, the music was a bit off on each device. I resolved this by raising the initial buffer settings. Set to what works for you.
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