So what's the deal? I'm not going to discuss its worth for money here because I'm not interested in that. What I would like to detail upon is my experience in setting it up and getting my network, tunes and printer on the air. I obviously did not mean to get those hovering but to get them streamed and linked wirelessly.
Here goes. I plugged in the USB port of my printer to the airport express and connected it to the power supply. The indicator on it glowed green for a second or two and then went yellow and started blinking, which, according to the Setup Guide provided meant 'AirPort Express may be out of range, or there may be a problem with your Internet service provider.' I turned to my PC running Windows XP Professional with a 802.11g compatible PCI Wi-Fi card plugged in. It haden't found the new access point yet so I refreshed the list of available wirless networks and a new network titled "Airport Extpress Base Station" followed by some code showed up. I clicked connect and it did. The software CD was in and the Airport Express Assistant had opened up which notified me so: must not forget to mention that irritating "error" notification sound
Nevertheless, I went on with the assistant, chose to setup a new wireless network but after it said that it had identified an Apple Airport Express Base Station, it did something funny, asked me for the password. It wasn't enter 'a' password, it was enter 'the' password and I obviously didn't know what to enter as nowhere had Apple mentioned that such a thing would happen. Not knowing the exact reason of this problem I decided to restart my PC, as with Windows, it works a lot of times. After restarting, I logged on as a different user and openend the Airport Express Assistant, which notified me once again, but this time I was given the option of setting up a new base station or modifying the settings of existing base stations instead of network options like before. I chose to setup a new base station and then to create a new network. It asked me to set a password for the base station and other network options which I configured and finally got my wireless network ready.
The Airport Admin Utility had even mopre options to tweak your network and Airport Express Base station and one checkbox for printer access.
That is what I moved on to next, setting up my printer to print directly from the Airport Express Base Station. The Setup Guide clearly gave the steps needed to be followed to get the printer firing pages, which involve the creation of new TCP/IP port and setting up the printer on that port. That done, the test page printed perfectly and so did the other pages I deployed for, duh, printing.
But the easiest of them all was streaming music. I just opened iTunes and it had a nice little dropdown next to the three buttons on the bottom right of the window.When will windows have such lovely applications (besides iTunes and Picasa2) which just get the job done.
I chose to stream the music and itunes instantly told me that no speakers were attached to the device, so I plugged in my headphones and started listening to music. Very simple.
That was Airport Express, although it does have lots of other features like extending the range of your already existing wirless network, keeping upto 5 different profiles etc. but these were the basic ones.