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Jabra Freeway Speakerphone with Virtual Surround Sound (But Why?)

When it comes to Bluetooth speakerphones, you really want them to just work; offer some decent voice quality, give me some good battery life, and I’m pretty much happy. Apparently, Jabra is not and it wants to differentiate itself from the rest of the handsfree crowd.

Fair enough, but why on Earth would someone cruising down the road be interested in “virtual surround sound” when chatting with colleagues, friends, and loved ones? Do I really want it to sound like the conversation is coming from the back seat rather than hanging out on the sun visor? Do I really want to listen to music through the Jabra Freeway when I have, I don’t know, a car stereo at my disposal?

As far as the pure tech goes, the Jabra Freeway in-car speakerphone has three speakers (to do the virtual surround sound thing), two microphones (for noise cancellation), voice commands, and multiple pairing capabilities. This last feature means that more than one passenger can use the same speakerphone, more or less at the same time… but why would a passenger need a speakerphone? It’s not like they need to keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road.

Yeah, I guess this device is quite different from other Bluetooth speakerphones, but the differentiating features aren’t exactly things that make me want to buy it. If you feel differently, you can pick one up for $129 starting in May, including a one year subscription to Voice Assist.

[GizMag via Jabra]

About Michael Kwan

A freelance writer and tech geek from Vancouver. Find me at michaelkwan.com and follow me on Twitter @michaelkwan.

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  • Mhudgins

    Huh, might want to put a little more thought into reviews I guess.  I bought this unti specifically because of the features the review thought were useless.  While cars have stereos, I spend a lot of time in rentals and listen to audio books often. The rental does not usually ahve a docking station for my iphone so I take the Jabra with me and it works very well for listening to audio books.  The idea of pairing two phones means I only need one of these as my wife can take it with her and use it with her phone, already paired, on the odd occasion we don’t travel together.
    All-in-all this is an excellent unit with extra features that make a difference.

    • http://www.mobilemag.com/ Mobile Magazine

      We stand corrected.  Thanks Mhudgins.