Motorola T305 Bluetooth Portable Hands-Free Speaker
At a Glance
Motorola's petite $70 (as of 3/27/09) T305 requires minimal assembly. This Bluetooth car speakerphone comes with a thick clip, which you attach to the unit's mounting bracket before positioning it on your sun visor. It can go either on the front or the back of the visor, and during my test calls it remained securely in its spot.
The T305 sports a dedicated power button, volume-up and -down buttons on either side of the device, and a nice wide call button, which has a good tactile feel when pressed. (I have small hands, but the button is about half the size of my pinkie.) The product's main drawback--and it's a big one--is that the call button flashes blue constantly when the T305 is turned on, something that I found irritating and distracting, especially at night.
Of course, it was obvious to my conversation partners that I was not on my handset; but relative to the other Bluetooth car kits I tried, the T305‘s call quality was mostly above average. Even though my voice sounded a tad muffled, one call recipient described it as "brighter" compared with the call quality that other units on our chart delivered. On my end, voices coming into the car sounded clear, with no distortion.
I did encounter some problems during a handful of calls, though: Call recipients picked up on low-level interference, my voice sounded shaky, and some of my words were rendered inaudible. Despite those gripes, folks reported that the quality was generally decent enough to keep chatting with me for a while.
To dial by voice using your phone's feature (if supported), you press the blinking button and call out a contact's name. You'll hear your phone's responses through the T305's speaker. If the phone recognizes the contact, it will announce the name and then proceed to connect the call. If it gets the contact wrong, you have to reach for the call button to cancel the action.
In my tests, dialing by voice worked fine some of the time, understanding me when I said "Scott" or "Bonnie," for instance. Other times, with trickier names (when I said "Laurenz" or "Mariana," for example), it either identified the wrong contact or failed to find a match. The odds of successful recognition increased somewhat when I shouted names at the T305, but not always.
If you're looking for an affordable Bluetooth car kit--and one that delivers solid call quality--the T305 is a great bet. Just be prepared for the call quality to take a hit now and then.
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