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February 07, 2014

Meet Beep, a Music Streaming Device from Ex-Google Employees

Wireless streaming devices have become much more popular over the last couple years as more people attempt to access their media libraries and favorite streaming services from their living room. Unsurprisingly, demand for software or hardware capable of facilitating this has resulted in a variety of options, ranging from utterly complex to dead simple. Recently, a couple of ex-Google employees introduced Beep, a Wi-Fi equipped dial that definitely falls into the latter category.

Set to launch this coming fall with Pandora integration, Beep is a basic, elegant device that can stream music to any speaker or audio system with a line-in port. As such, the device is at once flexible and extremely limited. After all, what’s the point of having a device that can connect to pretty much any speaker, but only offers access to one streaming service?

That said, its limited scale and scaled-down design are appropriate coming from former Google employees — Daniel Conrad, who worked on the Nexus One and Shawn Lewis, formerly part of Google’s platform team — as these elements are reminiscent of the Google Nexus Q. That isn’t to say Beep will go the way of Nexus Q, which was discontinued months after its release; on the contrary, Beep has what it takes to become a bonafide success.

Although it can only access Pandora streaming, as well as users’ personal libraries via the Beep mobile app, the Beep will get further integration over time, according to Conrad. If this does come to pass, Beep’s simplicity and broad speaker compatibility should make it an attractive option. Moreover, multiple Beeps can be paired together via the accompanying mobile app to create a house-wide multimedia network quickly and easily.

Regardless of whether the Beep dial itself takes off, though, the Beep team will live on as it already talking to manufacturers about including Beep Wi-Fi modules in their products.

Edited by Cassandra Tucker

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