Adding Wireless into the Audio BREW

Please bear with us a moment here—we know most audiophiles react to MP3-related news with a serious case of ringing ears, but tracing where the lo-fi market is currently headed can be instructive for understanding the distant hi-fi future. And if the new technology previewed last week at Qualcomm's BREW conference in San Diego is any indication, some parts of your audio future may, in fact, be wireless.

Qualcomm's BREW (Binary Runtime Environment for Wireless) platform is expected to soon encourage developers to create applications that operate on mobile handsets. Anticipating the need to "dial in" to one's music library while on the go, says that it is using BREW to develop new technologies to enable music consumers to access their personal music collections from nearly anywhere, whether it is a home audio player, a portable device, a car stereo, or a wireless handset.

According to, the evolution of this technology is designed to eventually allow customers to travel with their music collections, "transforming the average phone into a high-quality mobile player." The company adds that it also aims to provide audio greeting cards and the ability to browse for music genres via wireless devices.'s Michael Robertson explains that "carriers worldwide have consistently shown strong interest in music applications as a way of expanding their service offerings, particularly as they upgrade their networks. Our vision in the wireless environment will allow the delivery of personal digital music content to listeners wherever and whenever they want."