Companies bet on Bluetooth headsets

The wireless future is on its way, and holding your mobile phone in your hand while using it may soon be a thing of the past, or at least that's what companies making Bluetooth-enabled headsets are claiming.

Bluetooth is a standard for short-distance wireless communications, which can connect devices at speeds of up to 1Mbps at distances up to 10 metres. The market for Bluetooth products is set to be a $US2.5 billion market this year, according to a recent study by Frost & Sullivan, and companies aren't about to let that opportunity slip away.

Plantronics announced at the Cellular Telecommunications & Internet Association Wireless 2001 conference its new Bluetooth headset, the Plantronics M1000, which will be powered by the second-generation Bluetooth chipset, manufactured by Widcomm. The M1000 only weighs 26 grams, and rests on the ear, held in place by a small ear loop. The headset has a single button, which can be used to turn the headset on or off, in cases of listening to audio from a PDA (personal digital assistant), or for answering and hanging up the phone when used in combination with a Bluetooth-enabled mobile phone. A second control acts as a volume dial or can be used as a mute button by pressing it.

The headset runs on nickel metal hydride batteries and can be fully charged in an hour to provide up to 100 hours of use. The M1000 is due to ship in the US in July, for $US149.95, Plantronics said in a statement.

Plantronics also announced a new headset designed for office use, which uses Bluetooth technology to communicate with a headset amplifier, or directly into a telephone with a headset port. No pricing information was available for the headset, which is due to ship in the third quarter of this year.

Denmark-based GN Netcom also showed at CTing a second-generation Bluetooth headset. The product, not yet named, follows the company's GN9000. It weighs 28 grams and is 5 centimetres (2 inches) in diameter. The headset includes a 2-inch microphone and a speaker in a single unit. The microphone folds directly into the headset when not in use. Battery life and recharge time for the headset are similar to those for standard mobile phones, the company said in a statement. Pricing and availability were not immediately available.

Swedish mobile telecommunications giant Ericsson, one of the original companies behind Bluetooth, announced in a press conference here that its first Bluetooth headset, which is currently shipping in Europe, will begin shipping in the US in a matter of weeks.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Douglas F. Gray

PC World
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?