All this chatter about Apple's admission of stock options backdating and CFO Anderson's resulting resignation is kind of lame coverage for a weekend so I instead wanted to focus on something cooler: bluetooth gadgets.
If your mobile phone has Bluetooth then you owe it to yourself to grab a really nice Bluetooth headset (you are using a headset with your handy, aren't you?). Headsets are important for safety and are required while driving in many states but it's the convenience that really makes them essential. Most Bluetooth headsets cost less than US$100 and once you have one it's hard to go back.
The problem with BT headsets (especially with Treos) is that the volume isn't loud enough. I've used several models and none of them is loud enough with my Treo 650 smartphone. Even at the loudest volume it's almost impossible to hear the caller. I even tried a software solution (VolumeCare Pro) but it doesn't work with Bluetooth.
Enter the JX10 Bluetooth headset from Jabra. It's tiny (weighing less than 1 ounce and 1-1/2 inches long) and can be worn with or without an ear loop. The JX10 happens to fit my ear perfectly so I don't wear the loop. The JX10 features a rechargeable battery with 6 hours of talk time and up to 200 hours standby time. The main benefit for me is that the JX10 is plenty loud with my Treo - bravo!
The other problem with Bluetooth headsets in general is range. Moving a headset more than four feet away from my phone results in static, hardly the 33 feet (10m) that Bluetooth promises. This is exactly the reason why I don't want Bluetooth headphones for my iPod, I can only imagine the range problems it would have.
The only downside with the JX10 is its proprietary power connector. Jabra made a fatal flaw when the decided to design the JX10 with a proprietary power port. I'm astonished that they didn't go with a mini-USB connector as it's almost the exact same size and would allow my to standardize on a single charger for AC/auto/USB charging. Instead they require me to tote a Jabra AC adapter in addition to the dozen that I already carry. The saving grace is that they include the USB-to-Jabra charging cable in the box so that I can charge it from my MacBook Pro. (The Treo 650 still also uses a proprietary charging cable connection, but that's a story for another blog.)
Despite a couple of nits the JX10 is the lightest, smallest and loudest Bluetooth headset out there and that's why I use it daily.
Jabra JX10 Bluetooth Headset
US$179 from Jabra.com