Bluetooth audio remains challenging on Mac OS X Lion. If this feature is important for
your intended use, please use the trial period to evaluate how well Bluetooth audio
works on your system. In my experience, Bluetooth audio does not work on some Mac
systems for reasons beyond the scope of Phone Amego.
For Bluetooth cell phones that connect with the Handsfree Profile (HFP), Phone Amego enables
your Mac to act as a Hands-Free speakerphone. When a call comes in, select Answer along the
lower right of the Call Status window. This will answer the call and route the call audio to the
default output device (speaker) and default input device (microphone) on your Mac. It may take
an extra second or two for the audio to connect.
If you have a headset attached to your Mac, you can select the desired Hands-Free device under
the "More" tab. If you have earbuds attached to your phone, press Option-Answer to answer a
call without engaging the speakerphone.
With Phone Amego connected and a call is in progress (dialed or received), you can transfer the
audio between your Mac and your cell phone by selecting Speakerphone from the action menu
at the lower right of the Call Status window. You can transfer the call audio to your cell phone
by selecting the desired "Audio Source" from your phone.
If your cell phone doesn't respond as expected, confirm the connection status shows your phone
is "Connected and Ready".
Notice Phone Amego Allows a Different User Interface Model
To your cell phone, Phone Amego looks like a Hands-Free headset. If you were using an actual
headset, any time your headset was turned and within range of your phone, you would expect
call audio to be routed to your headset. This is how the Hands-Free Profile (HFP) normally works
(Accept HandsFree Always).
Since you are using your Mac as a speakerphone, just because your Mac is turned on does not
mean you want call audio routed to your Mac. You might have carried your cell phone to a
another room when a call arrives and not be able to hear your Mac easily. For this reason, Phone
Amego will normally close the Bluetooth audio connection transferring the audio back to your
phone unless you select Answer on Speakerphone or Speakerphone from your Mac (HandsFree
You can control whether call audio is automatically routed to your Mac by choosing HandsFree
When Selected (default), Accept HandsFree Always, or Disconnect During Call.
Accept HandsFree When Selected - close the Bluetooth audio connection immediately
(sending it back to your phone) unless answer on speakerphone is selected.
Accept HandsFree Always - default Bluetooth HFP behavior.
Disconnect During Call - disconnect from the HandsFree Gateway during a call to allow iPhone
to work with a Bluetooth headset.
Using a Bluetooth Headset
Since Phone Amego uses the "Handsfree Gateway" to connect with iPhone, you cannot use a
Bluetooth headset and Phone Amego at the same time without some compromise. If you select
Disconnect During Call, Phone Amego will disconnect from the HandsFree Gateway when dialing
is complete or you answer a call allowing a Bluetooth headset to be used. Hanging up or closing
the Call Status window will tell Phone Amego to reconnect to your phone. You may need to press
the connect button on your headset after dialing or answering a call.
Another option is to use "Push Dialer" for iPhone. This App allows you to dial by sending a push
notification to your iPhone so does not require Bluetooth. You will still need to acknowledge the
push notification on your phone before it will dial. To use Phone Amego with Push Dialer, you will
need to download Push Dialer from the App Store ($2.99), download the Mac software
companion, and add a Generic Dial URL in Phone Amego by selecting "Attach Device -> Generic
Dial URL -> Push Dialer for iPhone".
Resolving Speakerphone Conflicts
If you are sitting in your kitchen, you don't want your Mac upstairs to randomly steal the call
audio from your cell phone any time you happen to move within Bluetooth range. In my testing,
the iPhone is good about switching the audio between the handset (Audio Gateway or AG) and
Speakerphone (Hands-Free or HF) upon request. I understand some cell phones are insistent
upon handing the audio to the HF and may be confused when the HF repeatedly closes the
connection. In this case, you'll want to try connecting to your cell phone using a Serial Port
Profile (SPP) instead of HFP so there is no audio handoff.
If your phone is often just at the edge of Bluetooth range, it is possible the audio hand-off (and
return) will not always go smoothly. The following considerations may be helpful: (1) You can
press speakerphone on your handset or select the Audio Source explicitly to force the call audio
back to your handset; (2) Try to have your Mac be asleep when you are not in Bluetooth
proximity; (3) You can select Disconnect During Call to block the HFP audio handoff when your
iPhone is selected in the Telephone Devices table.
If you are running Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion), you can disable Bluetooth audio by selecting: System
Preferences -> Bluetooth -> Your iPhone -> Advanced -> Reject incoming audio
If call audio fails to play through your Mac, make sure Bluetooth audio is not disabled as
described above ("Reject incoming audio requests", or "Disconnect During Call"). Check to make
sure no other applications are trying to use Bluetooth audio such as iChat or Skype.
You can collect debugging information to help us see what is happening as follows:
(1) Phone Amego has a debug log you can enable under the More tab. When Bluetooth audio is
being transferred, you will see an "SCO Link Established" message.
(2) You can Option click on the Bluetooth Menu and select "Create Diagnostics Report on
Desktop" after the problem occurs (please Email this to the developer).
(3) If you are comfortable with the UNIX command line, you can type the commands below to
log more Bluetooth audio information.
sudo touch /var/log/bluetoothAudio.log
sudo chmod a+rw /var/log/bluetoothAudio.log
Some users have been disappointed to discover that Phone Amego does not provide big clear
audio similar to Skype. At this time, Phone Amego simply routes the audio from the Bluetooth
audio driver to the selected mic and speakers on your Mac. The audio quality may be impacted
by your cell phone reception, the Bluetooth radio connection, Bluetooth audio compression, and
the speaker and microphone actually used (resulting in some echo). Using a headset should
help. If the speakerphone feature is critical for your intended use, please evaluate this feature
carefully in your actual environment. I hope to add echo cancellation in a future release.
Upto 4 Bluetooth audio connections can be supported in a small area with modest packet loss. As
more connections are added, the drop in audio quality will become more noticeable.
For more information, please see: