[photopress:20070928433.jpg,thumb,pp_image]Just got this in my morning email from a CNET hot community topic mailing list. Truth be told, I once thought that talking into thin air was indeed weird and, yes, dorky. In fact, it needn’t even have to be bluetooth headsets. You know, even back many years ago, someone using a well concealed wired ear piece which wasn’t apparent to others around… well that looked strange too.
Well, many tech things are both cool and dorky at the same time. But over time, they gain more acceptance and become more commonplace, so the dorkiness factor erodes away. Bluetooth headsets are more function than a cool-show-off-gizmo. It’s not just that handsfree headsets are mandated for drivers in some countries, like Singapore. But handsfree is really useful to get other work done while on the phone, particularly when you really have to be doing something else while on the phone. For example, I’ve spent hours at one go on the phone with a colleague while troubleshooting a network fault… I needed to talk on the phone, and at the same time I needed my hands to type, to connect cables, to reboot things, etc. It would have been totally unproductive had one of my hands been “unavailable”.
Furthermore… believe it or not, with the increased clarity and quality of bluetooth headsets, sometimes you do get better audio quality than from your phone’s own mic and speaker. Yes, some phones even when used as a handset (i.e. held to your ears/mouth as opposed to speaker phone style) don’t give you as good audio satisfaction as the better bluetooth headsets can deliver.
On the CNET forum, well, people are getting down into details about headsets with mic booms and all that. Well nevermind that, I tend to think those are matter of design and style. Personally I prefer to have an un-intrusive and piece that doesn’t draw attention to itself (hmm, unless perhaps until it has already been noticed…). So small, inconspicuous is nice. Years ago, in the light of the talking-into-thin-air thingy, I would have thought otherwise though. But we progress. I’m sure once upon a time, talking to a brick was highly ridiculous…