Carla Bruni, Italian-French singer, songwriter and wife of the former French President Nicolas Sarkozy, now showing up everywhere in Paris in the advertisement for Zik headset, developed by Parrot, with a tagline -- ‘The most advanced headphones.’
Parrot, French car audio company, has developed a wireless headset featuring Bluetooth connectivity, active noise cancellation and near-field communications for Bluetooth pairing.
The headset comes with a touch-sensitive panel on the ear cup, which the user can swipe up and down to increase and decrease volume, and forward and back to skip tracks. A head-detection sensor in the headphone knows when you put the headphones around your neck. It triggers the headset to pause music on. Put the headphones back on, it resumes music.
It offers hands-free calling. Equipped with two directional microphones and a jawbone conductor, the headset captures the vibration of the jawbone and merges it with voice for calls.
Parrot’s free downloadable app seamlessly connects the headset with a user’s iPhone, allowing control of calls and music also from the iPhone. If a call interrupts music, remove the headphones and the call is automatically switched to smartphone.
The main problem with these burgeoning apps is finding them. Search engines haven't kept up with the huge amount of data out there. Digging through 1500 apps in hopes of finding one that meets my needs is not an option. Especially when 90% of what comes up is useless or off-topic. A lot of them are malware, too. They report things about you and your phone without telling you. When you can search "certified safe" apps accurately by topic (i.e. a search for "weather" doesn't turn up "pretty girl" apps), these apps will have arrived.
The potential is great! Too bad that there is so much clogging the works.
Agree with Selinz: At age 76 I cannot easily read the my smartphone "stuff" unless I ban the banners and most web pages and stick to making phone calls and reading email without attachments. I can use 10 percent of smartphone features perhaps, and its much slower than answering my old phone so far, and bulkier. But that's a senior view. Grandkids love it, so no more PC's for them. Just games.
It's true that smartphones are becoming the center of our personal universe. I dropped off my son for an interview and he had a couple hours to kill. I suggested that he bring is relatively new laptop. "No, I can do anything I want to do with my phone." Because of the screen resolution packed into smartphones, the only headset that is really needed for me is a set of reading glasses!
I own a Roku HD and last week I installed their remote control app on my Razr M phone. It found the Roku on my Wi-Fi home network immediately and it works amazingly well indeed. There is no perceivable lag between touches on the screen and corresponding action on the TV screen.
I see a wave of new-generation CE vendors flooding the market by developing products that truly leverage smartphones consumers already have. Connectivity to mobile phones is no longer an afterthought for these companies.
Share your favorites -- gadgets and apps built for smartphones -- that are not listed here!