This article was first published on 2009-04-10. Due to the age of this article, it is included here for archive purposes only.
Yes, Apple sells premium products at a premium price, but I’m OK with that if they are what I use and look at all day long. One upside comes when Apple hardware and software comes together to give you experience that their marketing and reputation leads you to expect.
In this case, a Favorite Thing of mine is the Remote app for the iPhone . What it does is control the iTunes on my Macs from a distance, sometimes from pretty far away as long as it’s still on my wi-fi network.
Normally I use iTunes to listen to music and podcasts on my Mac Pro in the studio in what is probably a pretty typical way. But I also like to use iTunes to stream music to the Airport Express in my garage so I can hear music there and around the yard. As you could guess, going back to the studio to pause, skip tracks or playlists can be tedious, so often I just don’t do it. I’m lazy that way.
But ever since Apple released Remote with the iPhone 2.0 upgrade, I can whip the iPhone out of my pocket and control the music coming from the speakers in my garage that are being fed from the Mac in my studio, when I’m inside my house and from all around the yard. Pretty sweet!
So here’s what it does (from Apple):
Be a mobile DJ. With Remote, you can control iTunes on your computer or on Apple TV from your iPod touch or iPhone. Play, pause, skip, shuffle. See your songs, playlists, and album art. Update to iTunes 8 and you can create a Genius playlist or edit an existing playlist. And do it all on your iPod touch or iPhone as if you were right in front of your computer. Remote works with your Wi-Fi network, so you can control playback from anywhere in and around your home.
In addition the controling your Mac’s iTunes, it can control the streaming music to your Airport attached speakers and your AppleTV. I use it to switch from playing music on my Mac to my Airport Express without ever going to my Mac. See the screenshot below.
Here’s a typical time I’m so happy I have that control in my pocket: Last weekend I pile the family in the car after a morning of yard work and as we’re leaving my wife reminds me I left the music on playing out of the garage. So instead of turning the car off and going back through the house to the studio to shut off the music, I pull out my iPhone and tap pause on Remote; the music’s off and the neighbors are happy.
And the best part: It’s FREE. Think of it as a perk when you own Apple products.
Got any Favorite Things to share with MFM readers like yourself? Send your story to email@example.com.