The Bluetooth IPod Controller For Android


By now, just about everyone in the industrialized world has a broken iPod with a cracked screen, a battery that won’t charge, or one that’s simply sitting in a drawer somewhere. The iPod is still a great way to store music, though, and [Trevor] came up with a way to control its playback with an Android device, showing the song name, playlists, and everything else with an Arduino and a cheap Bluetooth adapter

With the right resistance on a specific pin on the 30-pin dock connector, iPods will send the track name, and playlists over a serial connection, as well as respond to play, pause, skip, and volume commands. There hasn’t been much work towards implementing the copious amount of documentation of this iPod accessory mode in small microcontroller projects, but with a little bit of work, [Trevor] managed to replicate the usual iPod dock commands with an Arduino.

Using an HC-05 Bluetooth module, it’s possible to get this iPod-connected Arduino to relay data to and from an Android device with a small app. The circuit is simple, the app is free, and if you have an iPod with an old battery or cracked screen, it can still work as a music storage device. Not bad, [Trevor].

14 thoughts on “The Bluetooth IPod Controller For Android

    1. While I agree with you that for a finished project you want, at the very least, a shrimp-like circuit on protoboard, what he has put up is a very easy to follow instructable that is much more accessible to your average DIYer than something involving tons of soldering, pcb etcing and messing around.

    2. Lol what is it with solder these days?
      protoboard and an atmega328, use an arduino or at the very least use a breadboard and some jumper cables, your making things too slowly.

  1. The Arduino talks to the iPod over 1 UART and the Android phone over….another UART. I’m puzzled as to why you cannot hook up the HC-05 RX/TX lines directly to the iPod.

    1. It seems the way he does it is why it is required. He uses the arduino as a translator of sorts. It looks like it takes in the app’s commands and then outputs them as the ipod command set. This leads to the question of why the app doesn’t just output those commands in the first place. I suppose this allows for the scenario where if Apple were ever to change their commands the app doesn’t change only the code for the arduino.

      Either way could be done without the arduino as far as I can see.

  2. funny – the image in this article shows a picture of an iPod -> arduino -> iPhone… hum… well, that aside – if you skipped the arduino and used your phone for controlling an iPod – then why don’t just use the phone? memory is cheap.

    The biggest feature this project have is the proximity sensing where the music starts playing when the phone is withing range..

  3. i do apreciate good critizism but the thing going on here is just some wannabe 1337 h4xx0r5 who think they can do everything better than anyone else …
    How about creating something uber awesome yourselfs and share it with us ?
    Or don’t you guys have the guts to be critizised yourself ?

    1. + 1
      I agree, this site is HACKaDay not ModernEEMiracles or DailyGrammerErrrors .com. I would like it if all the haters would come together and share all of there professional experience and industry secrets with the people that are just trying to do the best with what they know.

      PS I’m sure I missed or added an incorrect comma or period in this post so go ahead criticize, I know I don’t have an English Doctorate so I don’t care.

  4. Memory is cheap and Androids will play flac files. Rotten Apples aren’t good for much. itunes, come on. And now they want to bastardize the headphone jack.
    Still a good serial hack, I couldn’t do it.

  5. Or “just” force your headphone output to send serial data. You will get only output, but with direct manipulation of raw PCM stream it’s doable up to 24kbps or so. Some level shifting and you are done.

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