At this point, everyone should be aware of the risks involved with driving while holding a cell phone. Yet many people choose not to use hands-free headsets or ear buds. They either didn't purchase a product to go with their phone, had one and lost it, or find it exceedingly awkward and uncomfortable. If this description fits one of your loved ones, think about getting them a new hands-free solution this year. At the very least, you could save them from getting a traffic ticket.
Among the newest hands-free solutions is the Allways headset from Cardo Systems. This Bluetooth mobile-phone headset promises to fit comfortably over a user's ear. Or it can clip onto the user's eyeglasses or sunglasses (See Photo). Because it uses Bluetooth technology, this ergonomic design keeps users from getting entangled in any cable between the headset and phone. Allways also offers an adjustable volume control. As a result, it can help elderly and hard-of-hearing users to listen to their cell phones more comfortably. They also should be able to hear words more distinctly.
The headset is built on an advanced Cambridge Silicon Radio (www.csr.com) architecture. It promises to work seamlessly with virtually all Bluetooth phones including the Sony Ericsson P800, T68, and T610; Nokia 3650, 6310i, 6600, and 8910; Philips Fisio 826; and Siemens S55. In addition, Cardo will soon be shipping a Universal BT Adapter. Once it's plugged into the phone's audio jack, this compact accessory will convert standard mobile phones into Bluetooth-capable devices. The adapter claims to be compatible with virtually all of the mobile phones on today's market.
The Allways headset provides up to 6.5 hrs. of talk time and 200 hrs. of standby time. Among its advanced features are noise-cancellation technology and a separate mute button. The device's single multifunction control button allows users to easily receive, initiate, and terminate calls. The headset also helps users take full advantage of the cell phones that are equipped with voice-activated dialing and redialing functions. Supposedly, users can operate their phones from up to 30 ft. away from the handset.
People who prefer stylish accessories will enjoy the headset's attachable colored front panels. These panels let users personalize the headset. The retail box contains three designer panels in platinum, copper, and azure. Users can choose among the various panels and exchange them easily. Soon, additional panels will be offered as optional accessories. Car chargers will be available at a later date as well.
To protect Allways from scratches or damage while it's not in use, the retail box includes a personal carrying case made of durable, rigid material. Users can clip the carrying case around their belts or carry it in their briefcases.
The Allways Bluetooth headset is available for a suggested retail price of $99.99. The allways Headset + BT adapter will begin shipping in late January for a suggested retail price of $164.99. The company's products are sold at retail outlets including RCS, Datavision, and other distributors as well as from the allways web site. For more information, go to www.allways1.com.
Cardo Systems, Inc.
100 High Tower Blvd., Pittsburgh, PA 15205; (412) 788-4533, FAX: (412) 788-0270, www.cardosystems.com.