Types of Bluetooth Headsets
There is little doubt that in a few years the headset will become the primary mode of interaction in the workplace. By many already it is considered the primary audio endpoint. The advent and adoption of Unified Communications has only sped this up. As in the UC environment a headset is likely to want to connect to multiple devices concurrently Bluetooth is a prime consideration when choosing a headset.
Of course there is not just one type of Bluetooth business headset – there are many – so we thought that we would have a look at some of the differing styles and takes on the concept.
THE IN EAR ( BUD ) HEADSET
When it comes to headsets you don’t get any smaller than earbuds. These are ( like Apple’s ubiquitous white things ) unobtrusive mini speakers which fit into the ear and often provide passive sound reduction.
Our favourite example of this is the Jabra Evolve 65T – this is a beautiful model with stunning sound and the ability to connect directly with up to two devices. It can access Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant and comes with a charging case which supports a 15 hour talk time. We have used these for Audible, for driving, in the office, for walking, for music listening and can attest to the fact that they are versatile and well made with an intuitive operating system.
THE BEHIND THE EAR HEADSET
The behind the ear reminds one of the in car headsets from the 1990‘s. These are monaural and hence less suited to listening to music and far less suited to a busy office or noisy environment. They are however extremely useful and less intrusive for the wearer than the in ear option.
Plantronics proffer the Voyager 3200 UC Headset – a lightweight and key shaped device which allows easy connection to tablets and mobiles and further comes with a Bluetooth adapter/ dongle for connection to non Bluetooth enabled devices. It is supplied with a travel case which will also charge the headset. The Voyager has 3 Precision tuned Microphones, Enhanced Noise Cancelling technology and Digital Signal Processing (DSP) Technology – easy to use and great sound.
SENNHEISER SDW 5016
The Office Headset is generally the classic over the head, on the ear product with a boom microphone. Whereas these used to be connected to your telephone by wired connection now there is a multitude of options including wireless DECT and, of course Bluetooth. The great advantage with Bluetooth is that it allows connectivity to ore than one device – meaning that one can end a call via Skype for Business and switch to streaming music ( or a call ) from your mobile.
The Sennheiser 5016 is a premium wireless DECT headset that also has Bluetooth connectivity – best of both worlds. It connects to its base station via a secure DECT protocol and also supports, via Bluetooth, connection to deskphone, PC, and mobile. It is a top of the range headset from Sennheiser’s Impact family.
THE AUDIOPHILE HEADSET
There are also headsets which, at first glance, appear to be the sort of headphones worn by a serious music lover. These feature over the ear cups and an over the head headband. By virtue of the addition of microphones these have been turned into fully fledged UC business headsets. They can be connected to tablets or smartphones or Bluetooth enabled PCs or can connect via a supplied Bluetooth dongle.
The most revered model of this type has to be the Sennheiser MB 660 which is known as an Executive Bluetooth headset. It has a range of connection options including wired and the sort of audio range that any serious music aficionado would appreciate such as :SpeakFocus technology, NoiseGard Hybrid Adaptive Noise Cancellation technology and Advanced Own-Voice-Detector. The headsets also have a touch sensitive area for call and music control.