Computational creativity and the future of AI

Jabra pulls a triple with new in-car speakerphone


March 24, 2011

Keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road: FREEWAY lets you control the commu...

Keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road: FREEWAY lets you control the communications using voice commands

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Jabra says that its new FREEWAY in-car speakerphone is the first to offer virtual surround sound through a three speaker configuration that provides quality audio when making and taking calls or listening to music. The unit sports dual microphones with noise cancellation technology, can be paired with more than one mobile phone and will even switch itself on when you get in the car. Users can control much of the device's functionality by voice commands and the claimed battery life is pretty impressive, too.

Once Jabra's FREEWAY hands-free, in-car speakerphone is clipped onto the car's visor, a built-in motion sensor will automatically turn on the device when the car door is opened and turn it off when you get out. The unit will talk you through pairing up a mobile phone and can handle being simultaneously connected to more than one Bluetooth device. The Bluetooth 2.1 with EDR technology has an operating range of up to 33 feet (10 meters) and the onboard battery is said to be good for up to 14 hours of talk time or 40 days on standby.

A2DP streaming allows music playback from any compatible media player and there's even an included FM transmitter to send the music/call audio to your radio for playback through your car's speakers. However, the inclusion of a 4 ohm and a couple of 6 ohm speakers with a frequency response of 300 – 18,000 Hz and offering virtual surround sound, may well mean that the transmitter never gets used.

The FREEWAY triple-speaker in-car speakerphone from Jabra

Making, answering, ending, redialing or rejecting calls can all be undertaken by voice command and FREEWAY will even let you know the identity of the caller, if it's listed in your phone book. Jabra says that HD Ready Voice has been included to help users get the best possible audio quality when making or receiving calls. The unit features a pair of omnidirectional microphones with Noise black-out Extreme echo and wind noise reduction technology.

The 3.9 x 4.7 x 0.7-inch (99 x 120 x 19mm), 4 ounce (115 g) Jabra FREEWAY will be available from May at a cost of US$129, and will come with a year's subscription to Voice Assist – allowing users to vocally respond to emails, texts, add posts to social networking sites and more.

About the Author
Paul Ridden While Paul is loath to reveal his age, he will admit to cutting his IT teeth on a TRS-80 (although he won't say which version). An obsessive fascination with computer technology blossomed from hobby into career before the desire for sunnier climes saw him wave a fond farewell to his native Blighty in favor of Bordeaux, France. He's now a dedicated newshound pursuing the latest bleeding edge tech for Gizmag.   All articles by Paul Ridden
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