the concept of jukebox seems irrelevant in today’s context, or so we thought. on the contrary, it is very much alive, but like a resilient bacteria it has evolved and survive as cloud music server in the guise of Pandora, Spotify and the likes. like many before it, Madrid-based crowdsourced WiFi network operator, Fon, wants you to turn any speakers, old or new, into a jukebox that dishes out music from the cloud, but it does so with a twist: it is also a WiFi router too. how the music streaming works is something most of us are familiar with: hook up this stylish box to your speaker system and connect it to the Internet via the Ethernet port or wireless network. then all that’s left is to induct your iOS or Android device to the new Gramofon WiFi network and you all set to stream Spotify or tune in to the web radio service Wah Wah.

as of now, only Spotify is support, but expect more to be offered in near future. for the router part of the equation, Gramofon operates like any Fon router allowing you to extend the range of an existing WiFi network, boosting signal of otherwise weaker spots and also lets you share your Internet connection through a separate public network so that guests will not be able to access your drives or slow down the Internet connection. however, the real star is its social music player status, which constitutes to the ‘jukebox’ element of this product. when your friends come by your place, they can simply log-in to the Gramofon network, using their Facebook log-in credential and start playing Spotify through the Gramofon all without having to access your private WiFi or hook up to the music player. and since the whole setup uses WiFi instead of Bluetooth, multiple users can be ‘log-on’ and take turn to play DJ and take control to spin the tunes.

Fon has taken the Gramofon Cloud Jukebox to crowdfunding platform, Kickstarter, where for the next 29 days, you will have a chance to ‘pre-order’ one for $50 and $60. however, these special prices are not going to last forever; they are only 6,500 units planned and of which 500 units have already been snapped up under the early bird specials, leaving around 5,000 plus odd units up for grab for the aforementioned prices.

Kickstarter via Gigaom

Published by Mike chua

Avid tech enthusiast, gadget lover, marketing critic and most importantly, love to reason and talk.