Solving the Bard Mobile "I can't hear my book over my Voiceover" problem with a bluetooth IOS remote
It's midnight. You're listening to a book on your phone to help you go to sleep. You realize that suddenly the character you've been following is now 80 years old and in the process of finally vanquishing her arch enemy that you've never heard of. How long were you asleep? Time to rewind--again. You take the phone off its charger, unlock it, swipe to hopefully land in the Bard app rather than the home screen, explore by touch to rewind (rewind kind of sucks in Bard, as an aside), and you can't hear the book anymore during this whole process and have to rewind further than you'd like. Or, alternate scenario: you wake the phone and, because you have audio playing, you can hit the play/pause button on the lock screen by swiping to it or explore by touch. If "jump by phrase" is selected in Bard as the navigation unit, you can even rewind by using "previous track." Still, you're wide awake now and VO was talking over your book.
And by "you," I mean me. Every night. That is, until I purchased--dramatically flourish gizmo for all the viewers out in late night TV land--the Tunai button bluetooth remote control kit.
I had to go into Amazon just now to even see what the product name was. I'm sure there are other similar products, but I can vouch for this one.
This little remote is about an inch and a half square, maybe a third of an inch thick, and has raised markings for play/pause, stop, previous, next, volume up, and volume down. And that's what it does, full stop. Somehow, you can also use it as a remote for camera and video, but anyone who uses it this way is invited to add comment below for everyone's benefit, since I haven't explored it.
In addition to the unit itself, we get a little holder with a metal plate that grabs onto a magnet on the rear of the remote. The back of the remote is also where you'll find the coin cell battery door. The holder's purpose is the two tiny slots running down its left and right sides, which hold very thin but strong synthetic rubber bands. Three bands are included, which I'll call extremely small, very small, and small. This setup is intended for strapping the remote to a steering wheel or bike handlebar. I have a square bed post that's about 1.5" on a side, and the largest band just barely stretches around it to seat in the other holder slot. So, my remote is securely fastened right by my head, while I can also lift the remote out of its magnetic holder (or not use the holder at all).
The manufacturer claims up to three years of life on one replaceable battery. It seems to take one long press to wake up and start working, but it continues to respond very well for as long as the phone remains in bluetooth range (i.e., until I take my phone with me out of the room). Then another long press will wake it up the next night.
This is obviously just my own use for the gizmo, but I've really liked it. I paid $36, which is more than I'd like but still worth it to me. Now I can control my audio book the way God intended: with physical buttons. The digital talking book player is better, of course, but I'm too lazy to use the web site and transfer books to my cartridge, in addition to the fact that I often read at random times and places courtesy of the airPods consistently in my pocket. So, there you have it.
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