TOY BOX: DriveBlue will not steer cell users wrong

How many ways have you tried to use a cell phone while driving?

How many ways have you tried to use a cell phone while driving?

A New York company called Parrot has a new alternative that I found worked pretty well, with some caveats. The Parrot DriveBlue+ is designed to work as a hands-free speaker/microphone with Bluetooth-enabled phones. Bluetooth is a wireless transmission method that's popping up on more and more phones, but is by no means standard, so check your phone first before you buy any peripherals that require it. The DriveBlue+ plugs into a car cigarette lighter, so it's extremely simple to set up. You have to synch the phone with the device. It's a process that takes a bit of doing in order to find the right menus on the phone, but isn't too daunting. I tried the DriveBlue+ with two different phones and found the phone makes a difference in sound quality and clarity on the Parrot device. A Sony Ericcson phone using AT&T Wireless kept breaking up when I spoke. The person I called also said that it sounded bad. However, a cool HP iPaq phone using T-Mobile worked much better. Any suggestions for gadgets we should try? Send them to
  • John N. Frank writes Toy Box. He is the Chicago-based Midwest bureau chief for PRWeek. Price $99 Available at Fry's, select Best Buys, and various distributors, including Specs two-watt speaker, range of 33 feet

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