The Philips Fidelio AS851 Android Speaker Dock recently hit the local market and it’s now one of the very few premium Android Speaker Docks available today. Over the last month we’ve put this baby through the paces and we can confidently say that it successfully sets the bar quite high for other manufacturers because of the amazing sound quality and the FlexiDock technology. Read on for our full review!
Primarily connected via Bluetooth
“Android Speaker Docks” are actually misleading because your Android smartphone, tablet, or media player isn’t streaming the audio via the dock. It’s using Bluetooth. The dock is just there to charge your device. From what I’ve researched this is because the microUSB port wasn’t made for docking unlike the Apple proprietary 30 pin connector. This is true for other Android speaker docks even from other brands.
Personally I’m not bothered with this because I don’t see myself plugging my smartphone in the dock when I want to listen to music for extended periods of time. This is because the audio will just get interrupted every now and then when SMS messages and calls come in. That’s why I think Bluetooth is still the best way to stream music from your smartphone and the Fidelio has this covered.
The Philips Fidelio uses something that they call FlexiDock for the microUSB connector. It’s basically a connector that can swivel and slide to the left and right. This makes it compatible to most Android devices since smartphone manufacturers tend to put the microUSB port in different places and orientations.
Apps are cool but not necessary
Philips has two Android apps that you can use in conjunction with the Fidelio. The first one, called DockStudio, is basically an app that will automatically connect your device to the speaker once you dock it in (it will activate bluetooth and automatically pair). The second app, called Song Bird, is a music player that has a pretty decent equalizer.
Initially I installed both apps but I ended up deleting both of them. The DockStudio app kept on activating even if I plug-in other microUSB connectors to the device like my car charger. I also prefer PowerAmp (unlocked version) over Song Bird.
Sound quality is amazing, Philips outdid themselves with this one
What really makes this product excel is the amazing sound quality the speakers pump out! Even at high volumes the songs still come out very detailed and don’t end up getting distorted. The bass is also deep and tight due to the tuned bass pipes built into the speaker. In terms of volume, the Philips Fidelio AS851 can easily fill up a living room.
In short, if you want a speaker dock (that can also do Bluetooth) for your Android device that delivers outstanding acoustics, you might want to consider getting the Fidelio AS851.
Pricing and Availability
The Philips Fidelio AS851 sells for around Php12,500 (can’t remember exact price) and is available in various gadget stores. We’re pretty sure Astro Vision and Astro Plus stores carry them though so you might want to check them out there.