Sitting in the bottom of messenger bags, wrapped around your iPod, tucked into a pocket in a purse… we’ve all got a cheap pair of earbuds somewhere on us. We don’t think about them often, unless they break. But the Adapt is about to take those drugstore specials and turn them into something far more useful.
The Adapt is essentially a Bluetooth adapter for any set of headphones. The Adapt itself can be clipped onto a pants pocket or a shirt and offers functionality to pretty much anything with a minijack, whether they’re a cheap pair of earbuds, or an ancient set of headphones that came with the original Walkman.
The Adapt pairs to your phone, or MP3 player if it’s particularly fancy, using Bluetooth. It’s got a fairly strong broadcast range for a small item, with promised distance of up to thirty feet, and, as a nice touch, it will automatically re-link with a device it had been previously paired with. On the face are some basic controls for volume and to skip forward or backwards on a track, saving you a little aggravation if suddenly a song from your high school music collection strikes.
The most useful addition, though, is the microphone. Yes, this includes a microphone, which means that the Adapt is a cheap way to replace those fancy iPhone earbuds when they are inevitably destroyed, since Apple apparently never stress-tests its accessories. And since the microphone is in the Adapt, not on your earbud cable, you can swap in any pair of headphones or earbuds, as long as they have a minijack, and the microphone will still work.
The Adapt will last five to six hours of active use on one charge (up to 150 hours on standby), and is available in black, orange, and blue for $40.
Dan Seitz is an obsessive nerd living in New England. He lives in the Boston area with a fiancee, a dog, a cat, and far too many objects with processors.