This is a review of Anker BT4.0 Headset with Charging Dock: Amazon.com: AnkerŪ Wireless Bluetooth 4.0 Stereo Headset / Headphone with Charging Dock and Microphone for iPhone 5S / 5C / 5 / 4S / 4, Galaxy and all Android Bluetooth Devices: Cell Phones & Accessories
When I received this new Anker product for review, the first thing that popped into my head was "I haven't used this type of small single wireless headset in 4-5 years". Will I even have a use for it now? Then, I started to analyze my daily routine. When I'm in my car I have bt through car audio, all great when you need to make/receive a quick call, but how many times I've been in situations where other people sit in my car and I needed to make a private call. Or how many times I needed to join a conference call in my car on a way to work and couldn't because noise cancellation of that setup is not adequate. Or I lost a count of how many times I had to call my wife to clarify shopping list while I'm at the store holding my Note 2 with one hand while pushing the cart with other hand. Then I realized, damn - I really need this headset!!!
Once I started testing it, I also realized how far along they came with a technology and how much of that is offered with Anker new Headset for the price which is probably 1/2 of some of the other well known brand names.
Let me first start by saying how light this headset is: at 7g and the length of about 2.2in it's featherlight and hardly noticeable when in your ear. To extend this comfort, it comes with 2 pairs of ear-tips with two sizes of stabilizers and a bonus of two detachable thin plastic ear-loop attachment that very discrete looking and will enhance secure fit even further, for example if you planning to go running, etc. The headset comes with a single multifunction call button that you use to pickup/hangup calls, long press for pair up, and use for other functions to reject the call, redial last number, transfer call from headset to a phone, or voice dial. I was especially pleased with voice dialing. Tap it once and say "Call #", follow it with saying "OK" or "Cancel" and off it goes. Furthermore, you have a volume up/down rocker which is used to adjust the volume or to mute the call when pressed simultaneously. Wireless connection supports up to 33 feet distance. Since this is Bluetooth 4.0 and it supports HSP, HFP, and A2DP protocols - you can also listen to music from your phone. That is another huge bonus - once paired up, headset is connected to the phone and media audio. So you can listen to music or stream radio or follow navigation with turn-by-turn voice direction. The phone also supports multi-point connection to allow it being used simultaneously with 2 paired phones. Furthermore, it has standard micro-usb charging port where a full charge will give you about 5 hours of talk time. But once you are in standby mode, it can last up to 100 days.
This brings me to one of the most unique features of this headset - the charging dock. The headset snaps to it magnetically with zero alignment effort. The charging dock itself has a side micro-usb port to charge the headset as well. What makes it very interesting and takes it to another level of usefulness - as soon as you snap headset to a cradle it goes into sleep mode and disconnects from your phone. Just think about it, if you are done with your call in the car or at home, you probably just put your headset down and continue draining it's batteries while still being paired up to your phone. Turning it off or un-pairing from the phone takes multiple steps and time effort. Here, all you have to do is bring it next to a cradle and it snaps in by itself going to sleep to preserve its battery life and leaving your phone unpaired. But once you hear someone calling you on the phone, you have an option to answer it from the phone or just pickup the headset which literally within a second pairs up with your phone. I don't have experience with any other newly released headsets of similar type and don't know if some of them might have a similar functionality, but I can guarantee those will cost a lot more money and some might not even offer 18-months warranty like Anker does. For an additional convenience, the Charging dock has an option on the back with 2 included attachments, one with a sticky side and another one with universal car vent clip. Just another well thought of bonus.
Sound quality was decent. While making calls, I heard people loud and clear, and nobody complained on the other side either. Playing music was not bad either. The sound was clear and stayed undistorted all the way to the max volume setting. One thing to keep in mind, this headset is intended for phone calls as primary function, so there is no dedicated multimedia controls.
Overall, I was very impressed with functionality and build quality of this product. I can even say - I rediscovered it's functionality all over again
If you are shopping for single headset and looking at other popular brand name versions, I would seriously consider giving this $29.99 headset from Anker a serious look.
Here comes pictures.