Today, I got an Airport Express because I wanted to play music from my computer on the speakers in my bedroom (without dragging the computer in every time.) The complete setup process:
- Took it out of the box, plugged it in.
- Found the "Airport Setup Utility" already installed on my MacBook and ran it.
- It disconnected me from my house wireless network and connected me to the new Airport (after warning me first.)
- Answered a few easy questions. It automatically knew the name and password of my wireless network to connect to (staberinde and aslan if you’re in the area and need wifi.)
- It reconnected to my network.
- Went into iTunes. Selected the new Airport from the speaker selector at the bottom of the window.
That’s it. Can you imagine anything like that ever being so easy under Linux or Windows?
It’s not perfect – there’s a 33 character limit on the password that they didn’t tell me about (normally, all my passwords are random 36 character strings because it’s not like I have to memorize them anyway) – but all in all, Apple wins serious Just Works(tm) points on this one.
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So hold on a second…
You’re playing music from a stereo that’s plugged into this AirPort Express, but you have to go somewhere else to select the music to play?
Well, no. I have to go to my MacBook, but it’s a laptop so it can be wherever I want it to. It can be in the same room, but it doesn’t have to be.
Yea. I often recommend AirPorts, even to non-Mac people, specifically because the setup is so good.
The iPod touch + Remote app is a really nice wireless remote if you are streaming music from iTunes. Almost worth the $230 for the iPod.
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