October 2, 2011

Jabra Journey review

With a state law not allowing texting or talking on a cell phone without a hands-free device recently going into effect, I've been looking for such a device for my needs. The earpiece never really appealed to me, so I looked into getting a car kit to go with my Droid Charge. I ended up going with the Jabra Journey, which I purchased from Costco.

The Jabra Journey takes about 2 hours to charge. My Bluetooth experience has been limited to printers and seeing others operate earpieces, so I wondered how much difficulty there would be setting this up. As it turned out, it was not difficult at all. Upon turning on the Jabra Journey for the first time, the Jabra Journey voice walks me through getting things setup, which basically consisted of turning on my smartphone, going to the settings, and turning on Bluetooth. In only a few seconds my smartphone was paired with the Jabra Journey. When I've turned on the Jabra Journey, it indicates that it is on then lets me know when it has connected to my smartphone. If I've left my Jabra Journey on, which goes into a standby mode after 10 minutes or so, it is able to sense when I am back in the car and connects with my smartphone. One time when it woke up from standby mode it appeared to not connect to my smartphone. It went into standby mode 10 minutes later, then within a few seconds, woke back up and successfully connected to my smartphone.

The speaker for the Jabra Journey is clear and loud. The Jabra Journey does not have the ability to transmit to an FM frequency like other car kit devices go, but I don't feel too concerned about that. I may miss it if I ever take advantage of the Jabra Journey's ability to stream music from my Droid Charge, as I don't know how it will sound through the Jabra Journey's speaker, but most of the time I am listening to music on the radio or a CD.

The Jabra Journey contains the usual volume buttons and answer/end button. It also has an on/off switch, so there is no need to leave the Jabra Journey in a standby mode. The Jabra Journey is supposed to have up to 20 hours talk and 45 days standby time. The Jabra Journey has no visible indicator of how much battery charge is left, so I wonder if I will get some sort of warning through the status light, which flashes blue when paired with a cell phone and was a steady red while the Jabra Journey was charging (it went out when it was fully charged). The Jabra Journey came with a car charger but also came with an AC adapter, a nice touch that seems to be rare with other car kits. This is especially helpful for me as I am using a Droid Charge car charger and I would rather have the Jabra Journey charge up while I am at home.

The Jabra Journey's voice button is used for activating voice dialing. I never make calls while I am driving, so do not expect to use this. When I receive a call, the Jabra Journey tells me who is calling if they are in my contacts, otherwise it gives the number. It then asks me if I want to answer the call or not and it understood my command just fine.

The Jabra Journey is narrow and does not take up much room on my visor and has stayed on it just fine. I see no indication that it will eventually slip off.

I've been pleased with the Jabra Journey so far and would recommend it if you are looking for a car kit.

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