Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
| VoIP & Gadgets blog - Latest news in VoIP & gadgets, wireless, mobile phones, reviews, & opinions



Plantronics SupraPlus HW251N-USB Wideband Headset

April 11, 2008

Rich and I reviewed the Plantronics SupraPlus HW251N-USB Wideband headset, featuring wideband codec support for use in VoIP applications such as Skype and Microsoft Office Communicator. Rich actually got two pre-production models and was kind enough to give me one of the SupraPlus headsets. Actually, he wanted me to be his guinea pig to test the audio quality since I get to hear and review quite a few VoIP products.

We tested the monaural style Plantronics SupraPlus HW251N-USB using both Skype and Microsoft Office Communicator. The audio quality was quite good.

JAJAH Mobile VoIP client for the iPhone

April 2, 2008

JAJAH, today announced that it is building on its current Apple iPhone call-back offering by participating in the iPhone Developer Program "to create possibly the first native global VoIP application." Sorry, Jajah, but truphone beat you to it with their 100% native VoIP solution for the iPhone. The new JAJAH VoIP application is expected to be available this summer, close to the iPhone 2.0 software release.

JAJAH already supports its web-activated telephony call back solution on a custom-skinned website for the iPhone, accessible via the integrated Safari web browser at

The new JAJAH Mobile VoIP client for the iPhone will enable two ways to make free or low-cost global calls to any phone in the world:
1) JAJAH's known callback service ideal for low bandwidth locations
2) the sole use of a Wi-Fi network.

Plantronics Discovery 925 Bluetooth

April 1, 2008

Say hello to the new Plantronics Discovery 925 Bluetooth Earpiece Collection! According to Plantronics, the Plantronics Discovery 925 "blends Distinctive VFrame™ Design with award-winning audio technology for the ultimate in Bluetooth performance."

Plantronics, Inc. today unveiled the Plantronics Discovery 925 Bluetooth earpiece collection, a signature line of designer headsets for both men and women. Delivering exceptional audio performance, complemented by bold lines and distinctive finishes, the Plantronics Discovery 925 Bluetooth earpiece represents a technical craftsmanship previously unseen in the mobile accessories category.

The revolutionary design of the Plantronics’ Discovery 925 Bluetooth earpiece provides outstanding incoming and outgoing audio clarity in any environment. Central to its performance is the unique VFrame™ design, structured to follow the contours of the face and draw the microphone closer to the mouth for a headset that is as much objet d’art as it is audio ingenuity.

Skype and other VoIP Apps on Mobile Phones

April 1, 2008

It seems new software comes out daily that enables you to run a VoIP application, such as Skype, on your mobile phone natively, through a bridged gateway, or using the Skype API. While Skype is certainly the most popular VoIP application, other software solutions exist that use the SIP standard. Still others provide SIP-to-Skype bridging capabilities. I thought it would be useful to have a rundown of the various solutions out there.

Asterisk USB Hub

March 31, 2008

No Asterisk fan can do without some Asterisk paraphernalia such as an Asterisk or Digium T-Shirt, Asterisk book, maybe even an Asterisk coffee mug from ITEXPO where lots of Asterisk happenings take place. Well now you can add an Asterisk USB hub to your collection of all-things Asterisk! This four-port USB hub in the shape of an "asterisk" was created by industrial designer Joel Escalona

He writes:
Some of these designs have been fortunate enough to be manufactured, others were just lucky to be prototypes or models and the less fortunate live within a render. So if at some point you are interested in finding out more about any of my projects or you want to produce, buy or distribute one, do not hesitate to contact me to ask for more details about any of my designs.

OctroTalk Launches

March 31, 2008

OctroTalk mobile instant messaging client features connectivity to Google Talk/Jabber with MSN, AIM, ICQ and Yahoo, IM capabilities, VoIP, P2P file transfer, folder sharing, quick picture messaging, and more.

OctroTalk works over both low-bandwidth and high-bandwidth connections, including  GPRS/EDGE/CDMA/WiFi/Bluetooth data connections. OctroTalk supports a low bandwidth codec with low CPU usage requirements so it runs quite well on smart phone devices. It currently runs on Windows Mobile smartphones, Windows Mobile Pocket PC, and Symbian S60 3rd Edition. OctroTalk features an easy to use user interface that supports one handed operation and 5-way navigation.

Scheduled Blackberry RIM Outage

March 28, 2008

Word on the street is that there will be a 4-5 hour outage of all RIM servers tonight. The outage is expected to start at 11pm PST for upgrades to the BIS servers. While I commend RIM for upgrading their servers, Friday night ain't exactly the best time to be bringing down the servers. There are probably more email and text messages sent on Friday night than any other night.

CandleCannon's Air Vortex Cannon - the ultimate prank tool?

March 14, 2008

VoIP on Apple iPhone a No Go unless over WiFi

March 11, 2008

At the Apple iPhone SDK event, Steve Jobs stated that if someone develops a VoIP program for the iPhone, Apple will allow it if it goes over WiFi and not the cellular network. Apple will in fact BLOCK VoIP applications from running over the cellular data network. What in the bloody hell kind of half-ass crippling of VoIP is that? Apparently, Steve Jobs aims to protect their cell network buddy AT&T from having VoIP calls be "minute stealers" from the regular cell network.

Magellan RoadMate 1425

March 5, 2008

The Magellan RoadMate 1425 is nearly identical to RoadMate 1415 however, the RoadMate 1425 adds an integrated live traffic feature and lifetime traffic subscription that uses real-time traffic update information to display incidents and suggest alternative routes. The lifetime subscription to traffic reports is a nice edition. One million POIs (points of interest) are included with this GPS unit. Importantly the entire RoadMate series comes preloaded with NAVTEQ® road maps, of which I am a huge fan (over TeleAtlas maps).
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