By Harry McCracken | Thursday, September 30, 2010 at 5:00 am
Back in April, networking kingpin Cisco and Aliph, maker of the stylish and sophisticated Jawbone headset, announced they were working together. The first result of their partnership is being announced today, and it’s a pretty obvious one: a version of Aliph’s Jawbone Icon Bluetooth headset that supports Cisco VoIP business phones.
The standard version of the Icon is available in six rather flashy versions with different colors and textures. The Cisco edition comes in a relatively subdued design in two colors–white and black–designed to complement the colors of the Cisco Bluetooth-enabled phones they’re bundled with. Otherwise, it’s got all the goodness of the standard version, including a small size that works without an earloop (although you can use one if you want, and otherwise adjust the fit using an array of bundled earpieces); NoiseAssassin technology which greatly reduces background noise; and MyTalk, a service that lets the headset talk to you to tell you about facts such as the battery level and permits the headset’s firmware to be updated.
Special software in the headset lets you use it with a Cisco phone or your mobile phone–or both at once–and Cisco says it’ll work with its Cius Android tablet once that’s available.
Cisco and Aliph say that this Jawbone is only their first collaboration–they have visions of melding headsets like the Icon with Cisco’s phones, videoconferencing equipment, and other gear in ways that essentially turns the headset into a tiny information appliance that you happen to wear in your ear. Should be interesting to see where it all leads…