Bluetooth Binding and Timeouts

Forgive me if this sounds a bit paranoid but I was wondering if the Sprout bluetooth designers thought about a binding timeout? Most bluetooth firmware can memorize some reasonable number (8 typically) of bluetooth pairings. If, for example, the Sprout were set to timeout the binding option of bluetooth after 120 seconds from power on, it would allow the legitimate owner to control who bound to the device (without the need for a screen with security codes or other features the Sprout doesn’t have). In a urban (or other close quarter) environment, this would prevent folks from intentionally or accidentally selecting your music system as their output device.


Good question. I know there’s no security questions or restrictions and it does remember the connection. So I suppose it does exactly what you are suggesting and there’s no timeout that I am aware of.

Most audio systems favor ease of use and convenience over security. (This makes sense as there is nothing really to “steal” or “exploit”). This does occasionally cause some mysterious usage anomalies, however. I have a wireless weather station on my roof. It is solar powered with a backup battery. I noticed that the backup battery was indicating “low” for a while (it’s a pain to change the battery…gotta climb on the roof) and then suddenly stopped. I was, of course delighted as it was winter and I didn’t feel like performing the maintenance. After a few weeks I noticed that my neighbor had gotten a new holiday present. On his roof was a weather station from the same company that made mine. Mine had died weeks ago and I was reading the weather metrics from his station. I still am. Still haven’t gotten around to replacing the battery on mine…

I suppose if my neighbor feels the need to “listen” to music through my Sprout I can either open the windows and turn the volume up or advise him on where he can get his very own…

Speaking of odd BT stuff with Sprout. I was listening with my iPhone 6 being the source over BT. Paused iTunes on my phone, went away, etc. Next day I’m coming back from a walk while listening to my phone with ear buds, but when I got in range of the sprout (which was still on) the phone re-engaged AirPlay and switched over to the Sprout for output. Which was rather surprising to me to say the least. I had the volume turned all the way down so to me it just appeared that audio had stopped, but iTunes shows it still playing and then I saw that AirPlay was set to Sprout. So not sure I am suggesting anything in particular, but just something to be aware of.

I agree with Mr. Newman’s initial post on this topic. Many, if not most devices offer at least rudimentary control over public visibility to their network services, and I’d encourage PS to build this into future releases, esp. for us apartment dwellers with lots of neighbors.