Monthly PC Tips

Use a Cell Phone Headset

September 2012 – by Per Christensson

Some of us are old enough to remember "old fashioned" telephones. You know, the ones with a rounded handset and possibly even a cord. These phones were large and clunky, but they were surprisingly ergonomic. It actually wasn't too uncomfortable to talk on these phones for long periods of the time.

Cell phones, on the other hand, are not ergonomic whatsoever. They are designed to be highly portable with little concern for the your comfort. This makes it difficult to talk on a cell phone for a long time. If you do, you will likely end up with a fatigued arm or a sore neck.

Fortunately, nearly all cell phones and smartphones support headsets. Most models now even include a headset with the phone. You can simply plug the headset into to the headphone/mic jack and speak comfortably without holding your phone next to your face. This makes it much easier to talk for long periods of time and you can even multitask while you're on the phone. My favorite activities while on the phone include doing laundry and unloading the dishwasher.

I personally own three iPhone headsets, which may seem like overkill, but it makes sense for me. I keep one upstairs, one downstairs, and one in my car. That way, no matter when I receive a call, my headset is not far away. The one in my car is definitely the most important since it allows me to always talk handsfree while I am driving. I don't recommend that anyone drive while holding a cell phone, and if your car has a manual transmission, trust me, it is nearly impossible.

If you don't use a cell phone headset on a regular basis, I highly recommend trying it. If the headset that came with your phone doesn't fit your ears, don't worry, other companies provide dozens of other options to choose from. You can find a good headset for $20 - $30. If you already use a headset but only have one, you may want to consider getting a second one just for your car. I think you'll find it is well worth it.

Finally, if you're not a fan of wires, you may want to try a wireless Bluetooth headset. Just keep in mind that you will regularly have to charge the headset since it requires battery power, and you may experience some interference with your calls. I personally like the wired headsets since they require zero maintenance and provide more consistent call clarity.

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