Scala-700

Rich Tehrani : Communications and Technology Blog - Tehrani.com
Rich Tehrani
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Scala-700

Testing the Scala-700 Skype Bluetooth Headset

Behind my desk sits a mountain of boxes containing videophones, wireless headsets and unimaginable gadgets for me to look at, evaluate and consider writing about. My day job is running the largest communications & technology media company in the world with four print magazines with over 600,000 readers a month, three trade shows with over 15,000 attendees in total a year and a website – TMCnet, attracting about two million people a month. My night job is to share my thoughts on the industry… Where things stand today and where they are headed.
 
As TMC has grown I miss the days when I had more time to devote to sharing my thoughts. So yesterday I decided to delve into the pile and start a review of the Cardo Scala-700 headset which the company bills as the world’s only voice-controlled wireless headset for Skype and high quality cell phone communication.
 
About a year ago I mentioned seeing an earlier Cardo System’s bluetooth, Skype-enabled headset for the first time. Since then I was looking forward to reviewing one of these devices and I am glad I finally did. The Scala-700 is a great little device allowing you to connect to Skype and a cell phone and switch between the two with just a flick of switch button.
 
The headset is lightweight and very secure as it uses an over the ear loop which keeps it from moving.
 
The speech recognition works well allowing me to call people from my contacts list. It should be noted I first trained the Microsoft speech recognition system for 10 minutes or so.
 
If you are a feature addict the headset does not disappoint as it has a battery indicator, 10 hours of talk time (I did not do an exhaustive battery test) and thoughtful additions allowing for the headset to be used easily on either ear as the volume controls can be reversed.
 
There is also a USB charger, wall charger and detailed instructions on how to set the headset up with your computer. A bluetooth dongle is included and I decided to use the included dongle instead of the laptops’ own internal bluetooth to test.
 
At first I thought the included ear loop was plastic as it pinched my ear a bit. After further investigation the loop is flexible and in a moment I was able to achieve the perfect blend of comfort and secure-fit.
 
This headset is a perfect complement for the person who has a cell phone and also wants to use Skype. It does both well.
 
I suppose the biggest drawback to hoarding these gadgets is the different connectors needed to charge each. I truly wish headsets used the Mini-USB standard many cell phones use allowing us to travel with myriad devices and few chargers.
 
It should be noted the Skype ecosystem of partners seems to be growing quickly and Cardo Systems was one of the earlier companies to develop products which integrate with Skype. Next month at TMC’s Communications Developer Conference the director of Skype’s Developer Program will be speaking and will further illuminate how companies can leverage the growing VoIP-software company’s user base.


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