Tempo Battery Free Acoustic Amplifier for iPhone 4 and 4S Review

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Here’s one of those products that, were I to simply see it online I would smile briefly and… move along. Yeah, I really wouldn’t have given the Tempo Battery Free Acoustic Amplifier for iPhone a second look. Good news is… I was sent one for review. Since it was in hand, I figured I would give it a try. Guess what? It works!! And at under $10 it is a great little extra for the iPhone-lover in your life. Let’s take a look.

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What Is It?:

The Tempo acoustically amplifies the sound from the built-in speaker of your iPhone by more than double. Without requiring any external power source or batteries, you and your friends can enjoy music and videos up to 13 decibels louder.

The tempo can rest horizontally or vertically and features a slot for access to the dock connector. Tempo is like a phonograph for your iPhone. Simply insert your iPhone into the stand’s silicone base to amplify its output volume by more than double. No batteries, wires, or external power source is required.

No external power or batteries required

Additional opening to accommodate iPhone charging cable

Holds iPhone in horizontal or vertical mode

Super durable light weight silicone

You can easily wash and clean the Tempo

Works with iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s

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The Tempo addresses a design issue that is not only present in the iPhone, but is present AND WORSE on the iPad. Think about this. If you are using an iPad the sounds is, at best, anemic. That’s because its single speaker shoots sound away from the iPad (and away from you). By simply cupping your hand behind the speaker you can get a huge boost in volume. (It happens to be the idea behind the Kickstarter project Foco. Check it out here.) It is a simple fix that has immediate results.

To a lesser degree the same goes for the speaker on the iPhone. It shoots sound down and, to a large extent, away from you. That means anything that takes the sound coming from the phone and redirects it toward the front will have immediate impact. The volume and, perhaps the actual experience of listening to it, will improve. That’s exactly what the Tempo does.

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The Tempo is a simple, soft base into which the iPhone 4 or iPhone 4S The bottom slips inside and presents itself like a desk dock. A large opening that looks like a gramophone flares out points forward. The Tempo takes the sound that would have otherwise directed downward and redirects it toward the front… and you. The result is a bigger and bolder sound.

The Tempo can also be used with the iPhone sitting in landscape. That’s important since, when in portrait, the sync/charge cord gets in the way of the device sitting securely on the host surface. That doesn’t happen when you use it in landscape.

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It is simple, cute and… it works. And all that comes for under $10. You can learn more and order yours in one of four colors on the product page.

MSRP: $9.99

What I Like: Soft silicon won’t scratch your phone; Conversation starter; Holds the iPhone like any good dock would; Actually works and boosts volume and, a result, enjoyment; Under $10

What Needs Improvement: Be prepared for people seeing it the first time to give you a What the heck is that?!?!

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About the Author

Dan Cohen
Having a father who was heavily involved in early laser and fiber-optical research, Dan grew up surrounded by technology and gadgets. Dan’s father brought home one of the very first video games when he was young and Dan remembers seeing a “pre-release” touchtone phone. (When he asked his father what the “#” and “*” buttons were his dad said, “Some day, far in the future, we’ll have some use for them.”) Technology seemed to be in Dan’s blood but at some point he took a different path and ended up in the clergy. His passion for technology and gadgets never left him. Dan is married to Raina Goldberg who is also an avid user of Apple products. They live in New Jersey with their golden doodle Nava.