Print 6 comment(s) - last by Regs.. on Jul 11 at 12:36 PM

Are we used to the law yet? Probably not...

I wrote a blog last week about the new law going into effect that forced millions of Californians to go hands-free while driving -- and it appears we're still getting used to the new law.  I still see a couple of people talking on the phone without using a Bluetooth or speaker phone, but if you're driving to California, be careful if you're going to try and roll the dice.  Although officers in San Diego and Oceanside are being a bit lenient, the California Highway Patrol and many local police organizations have cracked down on drivers violating the law since day one.

With additional patrols out for the July 4 holiday weekend, the number of drivers busted should be astounding once the numbers begin to trickle out.

Like many of you, I am still going to wait patiently over the next year or so to see if traffic accidents truly decrease due to the new law, but can't wait to see what the research numbers report.

The mad rush to go out and purchase Bluetooth headsets dramatically increased sales, with several retailers creating entire Bluetooth sections for customers to browse different headsets.

For those of you who still are in the hunt for a snazzy new Bluetooth headset, there are a small handful of higher-end headsets that are simply amazing.

I've had the opportunity to test out several different expensive Bluetooth headsets, but only two of them truly stand out in my mind.

The Plantronics Discovery 925 is available with an MSRP of $150, but can be found through online retailers for $85 or $95.  The Bluetooth model is lightweight and provides a few features that are not available on cheaper headsets.  As expected of the higher price tag, sound quality is better than most mid-range with a very comfortable fit and actually looks rather stylish.  I don't like that it doesn't have a call mute button and there is just one volume control button.

I've personally used the Aliph Jawbone and Jawbone 2 Bluetooth headsets, and appreciate both of them very much.  I upgraded from the original Jawbone and gave it to my ex-girlfriend, and will likely pick up a Jawbone 2 later this week.  The new model is half the size of the original model and the sound quality has improved even further than the original.

Utilizing the innovative Noise Assassin technology, the headset's sound quality when paired to by RIM BlackBerry Curve 8830 is phenomenal.  The Voice Activity Sensor does a great job of detecting speech patterns focusing in on a speaker's voice instead of the background noise of traffic, music and so on.

I only had two complaints about the original Jawbone:  durability of the clips, and the bulkiness of the headset.  Aliph listened to customer complaints and fixed both problems with the Jawbone 2, as the model is much smaller and the clip seems much more durable than the original.  I broke a couple of clips with my original Jawbone, but have borrowed a friend's Jawbone 2 and haven't managed to destroy any of the clips yet.

The Jawbone will hurt your wallet a bit, sporting a $129 retail price tag.

If you're one of the unlucky ones who got popped with a ticket, Aliph will knock off $20 from the cost of a Jawbone headset through the company's web site.  

Go out and read some reviews of various devices, decide what price point you're willing to reach, and happy hunting!

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By 4wardtristan on 7/8/2008 7:26:46 PM , Rating: 3
we have had this in effect in australia for a while now...

while it is good (i guess), it does increase the likely-hood of text messaging while driving, which, in my opinion, is more dangerous then driving whilst talking...

RE: txting
By HrilL on 7/9/2008 7:06:49 PM , Rating: 2
I agree completely but they are working on a new law to ban that as well.

RE: txting
By lompocus on 7/11/2008 1:04:11 AM , Rating: 2
I thought ALL cell-phone use was banned in this law, for the driver at least.

IMO it also makes sense to ban eating whilst driving. Think about it: It's messier than a cell. It could, erm, seep into the engine!

Hey, you know SOME congressman coming up with that argument!

By Screwballl on 7/9/2008 12:17:48 PM , Rating: 2
Like many of you, I am still going to wait patiently over the next year or so to see if traffic accidents truly decrease due to the new law, but can't wait to see what the research numbers report.

I suspect there will be no decrease and probably an increase in accidents. This is because of one reason: people are still dumb enough to talk on the phone while driving. It doesn't matter if they are holding it up to their head or on a bluetooth or whatever, they are still on the phone and distracted from their driving.
I say ban ALL phone or text based services (from a phone, laptop, PDA or any device of this type) while a car is in motion. The only exception should be GPS which most are now voice activated.

I just simply turn the phone off
By Regs on 7/11/2008 12:36:01 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah there is a chance that a family member could die at any second or the president could be assassinated, but I just never had use for it while I'm in a car. The longest I've driven was for 6 hours. If some one calls, they'll leave a message and I'll get to it at the nearest rest stop.

I always found phones on the road not only distracting, but really annoying. "No, I'm not going to be able to pick up those baked goods on sale at Costco after work Hun". "Should of called me at work".

"I'd be pissed too, but you didn't have to go all Minority Report on his ass!" -- Jon Stewart on police raiding Gizmodo editor Jason Chen's home
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