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TsooRad is a blog for John Weber. John is a Skype for Business MVP (2015-2018) - before that, a Lync Server MVP (2010-2014). My day job is titled "Technical Lead, MS UC" - I work with an awesome group of people at CDW, LLC. I’ve been at this gig in one fashion or another since 1988 - starting with desktops (remember Z-248’s?) and now I am in Portland, Oregon. I focus on collaboration and infrastructure. This means Exchange of all flavors, Skype, LCS/OCS/Lync, Windows, business process, and learning new stuff. I have a variety of interests - some of which may rear their ugly head in this forum. I have a variety of certifications dating back to Novell CNE and working up through the Microsoft MCP stack to MCITP multiple times. FWIW, I am on my third career - ex-USMC, retired US Army. I have a fancy MBA. One of these days, I intend to start teaching. The opinions expressed on this blog are mine and mine alone.

2013/12/05

Logitech Mobile Speaker Phone (device review)

The fine folks at Logitech sent me a new toy!  And it is not even Christmas (yet).  Obviously, I am stoked.  You can check out the Logitech market-speak right here. As an “Optimized for Lync” – AND with a Skype label – I am interested in seeing how well it does.

What comes in the box

The standard stuff comes in the box.  The unit itself, a wall charger, and the one non-standard piece:  the doohickey that shims the mobile device slot for different sizes (Clunky at best).  Perhaps I have fat fingers or something, but I had a somewhat difficult time getting the little thingy installed, and when I went to turn it around (cuz I chose the wrong direction) I had to use a tool (a handy scissors) to pry it back out and then futz with it to get it back in.

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The Good

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Charging time was pretty good, it did not take too long and I was up and running.  So here is the good part.   Performance on Lync was excellent.  Plug it in to the nearest USB port (my hub in this case) and it was working. Sound quality is really good, volume control seemed to fill the room, and the unit seems very solid.

The not-so-good

My iPhone is not NFC capable (apparently no Apple mobile product will do NFC)(and no, I did not do extensive research).  So that feature is moot to me. And then I could not figure out how to (easily)(interpret this as John does not read the docs, but expects to be able to figure it out with minimal hassle) pair the device with my iPhone 4s.  Again, maybe it is just me, but I found that having the power button, the BT pair button, and the charge indicator around to the side/bottom of the unit to be…inconvenient. 

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Why not have those buttons up top where I can see them right off?  And while we are at it, why is the power button a pushy-thing?  Hold it?  For how long?  Gimme a slide button for power on/off.  So I KNOW it is done.  With the P710e, playing with the power button invokes a color show as the indicator lights on the front go blue and red and run in circles.  Pretty, but unless you speak Logitech, fairly confusing.  The exact same LED’s turn green and light up to indicate volume setting while in a call…but are blank until you are actually IN a call. And even then, my experiment only had them flash at me while I adjusted the volume, and then they went dark again.  OTOH, volume for the call was excellent, and audio quality was also excellent.

BUT!  With my iPhone in the slot, you cannot hit the home button.  So, to test Pandora audio quality, I had to pickup the phone, change things, then put it back down.  At which point I stopped using the handy cradle thing. 

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But, the audio quality, while not up to Infinity Studio Monitor standards, was beyond pretty good for a speaker phone.  Certainly capable of filling a small room.

While I am complaining, I also found the buttons for controlling the call start, end, volume and mute to be just a bit too touch sensitive.  Just brushing your finger over the button invokes whatever the button does.  Maybe I just need to be more aware of my surroundings or possibly move the unit to a new location?  But wait, from my hub to where I want to put the unit exceeds the length of the USB cable.

Back to the Good

BlueTooth on my laptop seemed perfectly happy pairing with the P710e.  I only had to do the infamous PnP shuffle twice before it worked.  Not too bad.  I then noticed that my laptop seemed to think the the P710e might have a display.  So I disabled that. 

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And at that point, I have replaced the oh-so-high-quality Lenovo built-in speakers and microphone with the P710e.  And it sounds very nice.  I like it.

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Battery life is ridiculous!  It reminds me of the stupid bunny.

Lync and Skype performance was on-par with anything else I have used.  Simple setup, works well, and ignoring my fat fingers and lack of brain cells, functions as advertised.  Another solid Logitech product.  You can get one right here.

YMMV

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