Plantronics recently sent me a review unit of their UC (Unified Communications) headset from the 700 range.
The C710 is a mono headset that allows for corded connection to your laptop or pc (thus giving a reliable connection) and at the same time keeping a listening ear on your smart phone so that you can take a call from that when one comes in.
It worked for me thusly: I was in a Hangout on Google+ when a call came in on my iPhone that I wanted to take. A click of a button on the controller and I was engaged in the phone call whilst muted out of the hangout; I finished the call and was automatically and nicely brought back into the hangout as though nothing had happened. Very cool.
Another instance: I was sitting at my desk typing away with my headset on and I remembered that I needed to make a call. I just picked up my phone and dialled — the unit connected my headset to the call and back to the laptop when I’d completed the call. Very tidy.
This is a productivity boost for me; normally I’d have to put on and take off a big cumbersome headset to make a skype call or participate in a hangout, but instead I can wear this much lighter headset, still hear all that is going on in the office thanks to the monaural design that leaves one ear covered and one ear free, and make and receive calls to my iPhone as my heart desires.
The Plantronics website gives a swag of features and benefits of the unit, such as:
- Premium UC headset seamlessly manages calls to and from your PC and mobile devices
- Available in hi-fi stereo (dual ear) or mono (single-ear) versions
- Smart Sensor™ technology lets you answer a call by simply putting on the headset
- Integrated A2DP lets you listen to streaming media from your mobile phone or tablet (I love this!)
- Detachable cable with integrated clothing clip to take your mobile calls throughout the office
- PC wideband audio with noise-cancelling microphones for high-quality PC telephony
- Digital Signal Processing (DSP) provides natural voice sound
- SoundGuard® and SoundGuard DIGITAL technology provide protection against audio spikes
- Smart Call Transfer automatically routes the audio from the mobile phone to the headset whenever it’s put on—and vice versa.
There’s a heap more.
Sure, I received a free one, but this is technology that I could easily see myself buying as a productivity tool for the office—I can wander around the office and still make and take calls then dive into skype conversations.
I had a brief search online and saw the prices are all over the place so expect to pay something between $130 and $180.
Fwiw, it comes in a very handy carrying wallet that protects the unit; much better for it than being bundled unceremoniously into my mobile office bag.