Tag Archives: headset

Choosing the right Bluetooth Headset

Visit unofficialmobileblog.co.uk for the latest posts

Visit unofficialmobileblog.co.uk for the latest posts


When choosing a Bluetooth Headset, its easy to become overwhelmed by the vast range of headsets available. They all look the same, do the same basic job, so whats the difference and what should you be looking for when choosing a Bluetooth Headset?

Bluetooth Headsets Size and Shape

Design

Design:
Bluetooth Headsets
come in a range of shapes and sizes. They range from the more conventional “over the ear” with a boom microphone, to small “in the ear” headsets that are barely visible. Each style has its advantages – In ear headsets can be more comfortable, especially for those who wear glasses, where as “over the ear” headsets can be a bit more secure, with less risk of them falling off. All headsets can be adjusted to be worn on either the left or right ear.

Weight

Weight

Weight:
The smaller the headset, the lighter it should be. If you’re going to be wearing your headset for long periods, a lighter headset will be more comfortable, but with less weight and smaller size, you may have to compromise on battery life. The weight of a Bluetooth Headset ranges from around 9g to over 20g.

Battery Life

Battery Life

Battery Life:
Battery times on headsets have improved significantly over the last few years. It’s not unusual to find headsets with upto 12 hours talktime and upto 300 hours standby time. If you’re going to be using your headset more for making regular calls, talktime will be more important to you. If you don’t really make that many calls, but need a headset for when you do get the occasional call, then opt for one with a longer standby time.

Music

Music Capability

Music:
Bluetooth Headsets aren’t just for taking calls. Stereo Bluetooth Headsets allow you to listen to your music in stereo (if supported by your phone). They work in the same way as a normal Bluetooth Headset, and will automatically pause your music when a call comes in. Stereo Bluetooth Headsets aren’t recommended if you’re driving, but are ideal for using at the gym, or during sporting and leisure activities. Most Stereo Bluetooth Headsets have music controls on them, allowing you to control your music without having to touch your phone. In order to stream music to a Stereo Bluetooth Headset you will need to make sure your phone supports the A2DP profile. Read my Bluetooth Guide for more information.

Charging

Charging

Charging:
How your headset charges can be quite important. A lot of headsets charge using the same connector as mobile phones, so its normally a good idea to opt for a headset that’s made by the same manufacturer as your phone. By using the same charger as you use on your phone, you won’t have to purchase a second charger for in the car, and you will only have to carry one charger around with you when you travel. Some headsets also support USB charging, making it easy to charge using a USB cable connected to your laptop if you’re out and about.

Multipoint

Multipoint

Multipoint:
Multipoint is a relatively new technology in Bluetooth Headsets. Standard Bluetooth Headsets normally allow you to pair with 2 or more phones, but only one can be active at any one time. Multipoint Bluetooth Headsets allow you to connect and use two phones at the same time – ideal if you carry a work mobile and a personal mobile. With Multipoint, both phones are connected, and when a call comes in, the audio is transferred to the headset automatically. If a call comes in on your other phone, you can easily switch between calls, just by pressing a button on the headset.
For more information on Multipoint and how it works, check out my guide to Multipoint.

Vibrate Alert

Call Alert

Call Alert:
There’s nothing worse than leaving your phone on silent in your bag or pocket, it’s very easy to miss calls, especially if you’re in the car. Some Bluetooth Headsets now have vibration alert, so when a call comes in the headset will vibrate gently on your ear to alert you. Some headsets now have a discreet LED light that flashes when you have an incoming call.

Voice Dialling

Voice Dialling

Voice Dial:
Most current handsets support voice dialling. Activating voice dialling with a Bluetooth Headset is a case of simply pressing a button and saying the persons name that you want to call. Depending on your phone and the headset, it is possible to answer, end and reject calls all through voice control. For the best compatibility for voice dialling we would recommend a Bluetooth Headset made by the same manufacturer as your handset. Mobile Fun offer a great range of Bluetooth Headsets, so now that you know what to look for, why not take a look at their range of Bluetooth Headsets.


Advertisements

How to pair your Jabra Headset to your phone

Visit unofficialmobileblog.co.uk for the latest posts

Visit unofficialmobileblog.co.uk for the latest posts


Before you can start to use your Jabra Bluetooth Headset or Bluetooth Car Kit you will need to pair it with your phone. Pairing is the name of the process that allows your phone to find and connect with another Bluetooth device. In order to pair your devices you will need to put your headset into pairing mode and enter a passkey.
For detailed instructions on how to pair your Jabra Bluetooth Headset or Car Kit, select your device from the list below.

Apologies in advance for how badly laid out this post is – I’ve moved from a self hosted blog to a wordpress blog and can’t lay it out how i’d like at the moment.. will try and get round to tidying it up soon.

This will take you to the Jabra Pairing website and guide you through how to get your devices working. If you can’t see your phone listed on the second stage, select the closest available model.

Stereo Bluetooth Headsets:

Bluetooth Car Kits:

How to use your Bluetooth Headset with Skype

Visit unofficialmobileblog.co.uk for the latest posts

Visit unofficialmobileblog.co.uk for the latest posts


To use your Bluetooth headset with VOIP programs such as Skype, you will need to pair your headset with your PC, authorise it to access Skype, and then configure Skype to use Bluetooth audio devices. The process is fairly straight forward, but varies slightly depending on the dongle and driver that you are using.

The steps below assume that you have installed the software that came on the CD with your Bluetooth Dongle, not the generic Windows drivers, and that Skype is already installed on your PC running Windows XP SP2.

To determine which Bluetooth drivers you are using, you will need to access Device Manager. To do this, press the “Windows” and “Pause Break” keys on the keypad simultaneously. This will then open System Properties. Click on the Hardware tab, and then you will see a button to launch Device Manager – click it. This will then open a new window listing all devices connected to your computer. Towards the top of this list you will see Bluetooth Devices, click the plus sign to expand the list. The top line should say Bluetooth Enumerator, the second line will tell you which driver you are using and will be either Broadcom/Widcomm, Toshiba, or BlueSoleil. Make a note of your driver manufacturer and close all windows. If you see Microsoft listed, it means you have the generic Windows drivers installed, and probably won’t work with Skype unless you update the drivers. For information on how to do this, read my post on updating your Bluetooth drivers.

Please note that drivers are specific to the dongle you are using, and you can only use the driver manufacturer that is supplied with your dongle. You cannot, for example, use a Toshiba driver with a BlueSoleil supported dongle.


Broadcom / Widcomm – Skype Compatibility Rating 5/5

  • If you have already paired your headset with your PC, delete the pairing.
  • Right click the Bluetooth icon by the clock and select add a bluetooth device. This will then launch a wizard to guide you through the pairing process.
  • The wizard will search for available devices, select the headset you want to use and click on next.
  • The next screen will ask you to confirm the services you want to use. Mono Bluetooth Headsets will list only Hands-Free Unit, Stereo Bluetooth Headsets will also list Stereo Audio.
  • Ensure all boxes are ticked and then click next.
  • Click OK on the pop up and then click finish on the confirmation screen. You may then see a further pop up confirmation message. Click ok.
  • The next screen will ask you to confirm the type of headset. Regardless of your headset, select personal handsfree device with no display.
  • You will then be asked to confirm what applications the headset will primarily be used for. Make sure Skype is ticked – click next,
  • Now switch over to Skype, you should see a pop up alert by the clock asking you to allow a program to access Skype, you need to allow this add on.
  • Once you’ve allowed it you’ll see a message at top of the Skype window.
  • Click on the BTSTAC~1.exe file name, then on the pop up screen make sure that the check box next to “allow this program to access Skype” is ticked,
  • In Skype, go to Tools, Options and select Audio Settings. For each of the 3 drop down boxes select “Bluetooth”.
  • Check the “Ring PC Speaker” box if you want incoming calls to ring through the PC speakers as well as ring in the Bluetooth Headset then click on save,
  • Make a test call. There may be a brief delay when it connects initially, but you should then be able to hear and talk through your Bluetooth headset.

Toshiba Drivers – Skype Compatibility Rating 4/5

  • If you have already paired your headset with your PC, delete the pairing. You can do this through the Toshiba Bluetooth Control panel.
  • You’ll see the name of your Bluetooth headset, and three buttons underneath – new connection, detail and delete. Make sure the headset is disconnected and then click delete.
  • Launch Skype.
  • Go back to your Bluetooth control panel and click on new connection.
  • On the wizard that appears, you need to select CUSTOM mode.
  • Turn your headset on and put it into pairing mode then press next. Your PC will then search for Bluetooth devices in range, if it doesn’t find your headset on the first scan, click refresh to do another search.
  • Select your headset from the list of discovered devices and click next.
  • On the next screen you may be prompted to select the type of device you wish to connect. You should see two or three options – Audio Sink, Handsfree, Headset. (Audio Sink may only show up if you are using a stereo headset.)
    You need to select Handsfree on this screen and click next.
  • You will now be prompted to enter Pin or Passkey, this can be found in your user guide.
  • The next screen you see should ask you if you want to use this in cooperation with a VOIP application. You need to make sure that this box is ticked. If its not, you won’t be able to use it with Skype.
  • On the final screen you will be given the option to rename your headset and place a shortcut to the connection on the desktop.
  • Click finish.
  • Now switch over to Skype, you should see a pop up alert by the clock asking you to allow a program to access Skype, you need to allow this add on.
  • Once you’ve confirmed it you’ll see a brief confirmation message in the main Skype window.
  • Click on this message and make sure that the check box next to “allow this program to access Skype” is ticked.
  • In Skype, go to Tools, Options and select Audio Settings. For each of the 3 drop down boxes select “Bluetooth wave” – Click on save.
  • Make a test call. There may be a brief delay when it connects initially, but you should then be able to hear and talk through your Bluetooth headset.

BlueSoleil – Skype Compatibility Rating 2/5

BlueSoleil drivers aren’t the best for working with Skype. The latest version of the drivers, 5.0.5, doesn’t support VOIP services such as Skype unless you pay for an upgrade. You can download version 3.2.2.8 from the BlueSoleil web site which does support VOIP at no extra cost, but I found it to be more difficult to use than Toshiba and Broadcom. The following guide is based on Software version 3.2.2.8.

  • Pair your Bluetooth Headset to your PC as normal and then launch Skype.
  • To begin setting up Skype, click on Start -> All Programs -> IVT BlueSoleil -> BlueSoleil VOIP Plug In.
  • After a few seconds you should see a pop up notification by the clock asking to allow access to Skype, you need to allow this add on.
  • Once you’ve clicked on it you’ll see a message at top of the Skype window.
  • Click on the .exe file name.
  • On the pop up screen make sure that the check box next to “allow this program to access Skype” is ticked.
  • Connect to headset, (either by pressing call button on headset, or by right clicking on the headset icon in the bluetooth control panel and selecting connect.)
  • In Skype, go to Tools, Options and select Audio Settings. For each of the 3 drop down boxes select “Bluetooth SCO” – Click on save.
  • In some cases, “Bluetooth SCO” may not work, in which case set these to Bluetooth AV.
  • Make a test call. BlueSoleil is a little slow, and you will find that your call initially is played through your PC, but will be transferred to the headset after a few seconds.