Consumer vs. Business Audio and Video Devices

Consumer vs. Business Audio and Video Devices 

Regularly I’m asked to review a variety of audio and video devices, including consumer products. I often respond that the Call One, Inc. YouTube Channel focuses on solutions designed for use with business communications and collaboration platforms from Microsoft, Zoom, Cisco, 8×8, RingCentral, etc.  

Microsoft Teams Devices banner 2

Packaging, Warranty, & Multi-Connectivity 

Most people don’t realize there are differences between consumer and business audio and video devices. Some differences are subtle, like the packaging to support mass deployments and extended warranty periods. Another difference is the inclusion of a Bluetooth dongle with UC Bluetooth headsets to improve connection stability, audio quality, and compatibility and provide remote call control. Leading device manufacturers also offer multi-connectivity solutions to support a broad range of use cases.  

Consumer Business Audio Video Devices

Compatible and Certified 

Business audio and video device manufacturers work directly with leading business communications and collaboration platform providers to develop compatible and certified solutions, so end-users have a great experience with setup, use, and performance.  

Consumer Business Audio Video Devices

Device Management Software 

A critical difference that has become increasingly important in today’s remote and hybrid work world is device management software. Businesses spend thousands to millions of dollars on audio and video devices annually to empower and enable their employees to be productive wherever they are working. How do business leaders know where the devices are and if they are being used? Device management software allows IT teams to remotely provision, monitor, troubleshoot, and manage devices.  

Depending on the brand and suite of products, some device management software offers analytics and actionable insights that can be highly beneficial for understanding user adoption, call analytics, room usage, and more! 

Poly Lens devices Consumer Business Audio Video Devices

Organizations need to consider developing audio and video device standards that provide device management software from these leading global brands:  

Authorized Resellers 

Authorized Resellers like Call One, Inc. can help your organization select business-grade audio and video devices that the appropriate software can remotely manage.  

Call One, Inc. is a Nationally Certified Women’s Business Enterprise (WBENC) and Woman-Owned Small Business (WOSB), helping people do their business better since 1987. We are an authorized reseller of Poly, Jabra, Logitech, EPOS, Yealink, and other leading audio and video device brands. Contact us if you want more information or schedule a meeting to discuss your device management needs.  

Device Management Software Video Resources: 

Personal Audio and Video Devices for Hybrid Work in 2022 

Today hybrid work means working from anywhere. The goal of business and IT leaders is to ensure their teams have a consistent experience whether they are working from home, their corporate offices, or from wherever they choose to work. Professional-grade audio and video devices can aid in providing a consistent experience.  

Here is a list of factors business and IT leaders need to consider when selecting personal audio and video devices for their employees.  

Workstyles / Personas 

There are several roles or personas within an organization with different communication needs. Poly has studied workstyle evolution for nearly a decade and identified six distinct work styles, or personas, making up 92% of a typical enterprise: Office Communicator, Office Collaborator, Remote Collaborator, Flexible Worker, Road Warrior, and Connected Executive. Each persona uses a different set of communications tools. Take a look at the Get To Know Your Workforce – Personas Overview.

Connectivity 

Each persona utilizes different communications tools depending on their role and environment. They may need connectivity to a desk phone, computer, mobile device, or a combination. Audio devices have a wide range of connectivity options to support whatever connectivity combination your team needs. For example, teams returning to the office may require connectivity to desk phones and computers. Employees working from home may require connectivity to a laptop and mobile phone. Hybrid team members may need an audio device that supports connectivity to phones, computers, mobile devices and can easily transport between work locations.  

Platform 

Leading device manufacturers like Poly, Jabra, EPOS, Yealink, and others offer compatible solutions for all major platforms, including Zoom, Teams, and Webex. Some platforms like Microsoft have developed a peripherals certification program to ensure USB peripherals (such as headsets, speakerphones, webcams, and monitors) offer rich audio or video quality, are plug-and-play, and provide an excellent experience for end-users and administrators. An authorized partner can help with compatibility and identifying which variants are best for your business. Contact us

Environment 

Work environments can range from corporate offices, third spaces, home offices, remote locations, or on-the-go! Noise levels will vary. Today workers can experience noise from noisy open offices, traffic, construction, lawnmowers, blenders, children, barking dogs, and more! Knowing your team members’ work environments is essential when selecting devices. Battery life may be a factor if they are somewhere without access to an electrical outlet. Video calls and meetings have become standard during the past two years. When it comes to video, good enough is no longer acceptable. Video quality expectations have increased. Multiple personal and group video conferencing solutions offer high-quality audio and video for more engaging and productive meetings. Take a look at these desktop video solutions from Cisco, Huddly, Jabra, JPL, Konftel, Logitech, Poly, Yealink, and more! 

Fixed / Portable 

Hybrid work has made it necessary to transport devices between work locations. The Targus 2 Office Antimicrobial Backpack is made to fit laptops between 15 to 17.3 inches, a full-sized keyboard, and whatever you need to carry! Headsets include carrying cases made of different materials depending on the brand and model. The cases are designed to hold your headset, cables, and dongle. The Jabra PanaCast 20 and the Huddly ONE Work From Anywhere Kit are two cameras that include a travel case to contain the camera and the cable for secure storage during travel.   

One Size Does NOT Fit All 

There are multiple roles within an organization with varying levels of communication and collaboration internally and externally. A person who seldom takes or makes calls will need a different audio device than someone with a call-intensive role. The same is true for video. Some positions require being on video presenting and sharing content regularly, while some only join weekly or once a month. The point is, one size does NOT fit all. Business and IT leaders need to consider the above topics when developing standards.  

New Device Standards 

The global pandemic has forever changed how, when, and where work is done. Gone are the days of controlled office environments. Organizations need new audio and video device standards. The good news is there is no shortage of options. Leading device manufacturers like Jabra, EPOS, Logitech, JPL, Poly, Yealink, and more have a broad range of solutions to support hybrid and remote work. They are also developing new solutions in response to this new normal of work from anywhere.  

An Authorized Reseller like Call One, Inc., with over 35 years of experience and a focus on personal and group audio and video solutions, is a great choice to help you develop device standards. To help people and businesses make more informed purchasing decisions, they test most audio and video devices and share them via their YouTube Channel. Call One, Inc. also provides pre and post-sales support and can ship to commercial and residential locations anywhere in the United States. We specialize in supporting mid-market to large enterprises and are a nationally certified Women’s Business Enterprise. Contact us to learn how we can help.  

Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series – Connectivity Options

Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series – Connectivity Options

The Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series are affordable Bluetooth headsets that provide professional audio quality. They are everything you need to stay productive and connected to all your devices, whether at home or in your office. To learn more about the available features and functions, check out this blog and video!

Poly Voyager 4300 Connectivity

This blog will share the differences between the sixteen Voyager 4300 UC models to help you make a more informed purchasing decision. Whatever models you select, I strongly recommend purchasing from an Authorized Reseller like Call One, Inc., a Poly Platinum Partner.

Connect to all your Devices

Out of the box, the Poly Voyager 4300 UC headset series provide connectivity to your computer via included BT700 USB adapter and mobile devices via Bluetooth. You can add connectivity to a desk phone via the optional spare Voyager Office Base. The Voyager Office Base is compatible with Poly EHS Cables and HL10 Handset Lifter. Contact an Authorized Reseller to check compatibility with your devices.

Poly Voyager 4300 Connectivity
Voyage Office Base
Poly Voyager 4300 Connectivity
Voyager Office Base, MS Teams
Part NumberModelDescription

218471-01 
VOYAGER 4310 UC, V4310 C USB-A, CHARGE STAND Connectivity: Computer + Mobile                       
Wearing Style: Single Ear Headband                    
What’s in the box: Voyager 4310 Headset + USB-A Bluetooth Dongle + Charge Stand 

218470-01 
VOYAGER 4310 UC,V4310 C USB-A,WWConnectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Single Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4310 Headset + USB-A Bluetooth Dongle  

218474-01 
VOYAGER 4310 UC,V4310 C USB-C,CHARGE STAND,WW Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Single Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4310 Headset + USB-C Bluetooth Dongle + Charge Stand 

218473-01 
VOYAGER 4310 UC,V4310 C USB-C,WW Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Single Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4310 Headset + USB-C Bluetooth Dongle 

218471-02 
VOYAGER 4310 UC,V4310-M C USB-A,CHARGE STAND,WW Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Single Ear Headband
What’s in the box: Voyager 4310 Headset + USB-A Bluetooth Dongle + Charge Stand                                               
Microsoft Teams Certified 

218470-02 
VOYAGER 4310 UC,V4310-M C USB-A,WW Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Single Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4310 Headset + USB-A Bluetooth Dongle
Microsoft Teams Certified 

218474-02 
VOYAGER 4310 UC,V4310-M C USB-C,CHARGE STAND,WW Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Single Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4310 Headset + USB-C Bluetooth Dongle + Charge Stand                           
Microsoft Teams Certified 

218473-02 
VOYAGER 4310 UC,V4310-M C USB-C,WW Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Single Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4310 Headset + USB-C Bluetooth Dongle
Microsoft Teams Certified 

218476-01 
VOYAGER 4320 UC, V4320 C USB-A, CHARGE STAND Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Dual Ear Headband
What’s in the box: Voyager 4320 Headset + USB-A Bluetooth Dongle + Charge Stand 

218475-01 
VOYAGER 4320 UC, V4320 C USB-A Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Dual Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4320 Headset + USB-A Bluetooth Dongle  

218479-01 
VOYAGER 4320 UC, V4320 C USB-C, CHARGE STAND Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Dual Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4320 Headset + USB-C Bluetooth Dongle + Charge Stand 

218478-01 
VOYAGER 4320 UC, V4320 C USB-C Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Dual Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4320 Headset + USB-C Bluetooth Dongle 

218476-02 
VOYAGER 4320 UC, V4320-M C USB-A, CHARGE STAND Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Dual Ear Headband
What’s in the box: Voyager 4320 Headset + USB-A Bluetooth Dongle + Charge Stand                                               
Microsoft Teams Certified 

218475-02 
VOYAGER 4320 UC,V4320-M C USB-A Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Dual Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4320 Headset + USB-A Bluetooth Dongle
Microsoft Teams Certified 

218479-02 
VOYAGER 4320 UC, V4320-M C USB-C, CHARGE STAND Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Dual Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4320 Headset + USB-C Bluetooth Dongle + Charge Stand                           
Microsoft Teams Certified 

218478-02 
VOYAGER 4320 UC, V4320-M C USB-C Connectivity: Computer + Mobile
Wearing Style: Dual Ear Headband
What’s in the Box: Voyager 4320 Headset + USB-C Bluetooth Dongle
Microsoft Teams Certified 

Watch and listen to how the Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series performs in real-world scenarios in this video!

USB DECT Dongles for Hybrid Work

USB DECT Dongles for Hybrid Work

Organizations choose wireless headsets for many reasons, including increasing productivity by allowing employees to be hands-free and mobile. Bluetooth and DECT are the most prevalent wireless technologies and operating frequencies in professional-grade headsets. Industries and organizations that share sensitive or private information over voice calls typically opt for DECT wireless headsets due to their increased security. Click here to see a complete list of professional-grade Bluetooth and DECT wireless headsets! 

Depending on the brand and model, DECT Wireless Headsets usually include a base station that provides connectivity options to desk phones, computers, mobile devices, or combinations. These solutions typically use cables to connect to a desk phone, computer, and AC power. These were great pre-pandemic solutions as most worked in an office with most of their equipment fixed at a workstation.  

The Challenge 

The pandemic has shifted where and how people work. Hybrid and remote work models have increased dramatically. The benefits of DECT wireless headsets are substantial; however, their portability is not. It’s not practical to disconnect the cables, AC power, base, and headset to pack up and transport between work locations.  

The Solutions 

Fortunately, there are a few solutions.  

Good 

Use DECT Wireless headset as a corded USB audio device. Some DECT wireless headset models support using it as a corded USB headset. This is a good option that allows employees to use their existing equipment in the office and remote workspace with their laptops. While this is an excellent money-saving option, you lose the critical benefit of being wireless. If you have grown accustomed to a wireless headset and then need to go corded, there is a bit of a learning curve. When I’m testing corded headsets, I sometimes forget and try to get up and walk away and am quickly reminded I’m tethered to my laptop. The Jabra Engage 65 and 75 support this option. You can use the included Jabra USB-A Cable – 14201-26 or purchase a spare cable to keep at home.  

Jabra USB-A Cable

Better 

EPOS Impact SDW D1 USB DECT Dongle

USB DECT Dongles. This is not a new option. Poly (formerly Plantronics) introduced the D100 years ago with their Savi 400 Series. The latest, smaller D200 DECT Wireless Savi Adapter is available in USB-A, USB-C, and UC and Microsoft variants. The D200 DECT dongle will work with Poly Savi 8200 UC Series headsets. EPOS recently introduced the EPOS Impact SDW D1 USB DECT Dongle that works with the EPOS Impact SDW 5000 Series. It’s currently only available in USB-A. EPOS introduced three new SDW 5000 Series models designed for hybrid and remote work and include the SDW 5000 headset of choice, the dongle, charging cable, and carry case.  

EPOS Impact SDW 5000 Headset + DECT Dongle Portable Models 

D200 USB DECT Dongles 

Best 

Complete setups at each location is the best solution; however, budgets may not support this option. A setup at each location is optimal and relieves the worry about transporting equipment to and fro and potentially forgetting an item or breaking something in transit. I am fortunate enough to have solid setups in my dedicated home and corporate office. I have monitors, docking stations, webcams, audio devices, and other peripherals, making it highly convenient for hybrid work. The only thing I haul is my laptop.  

Audio is critical 

Whichever solution you choose, audio is critical in business communication. Ensure your team members have high-quality, purpose-built audio solutions designed for UC and Collaboration platforms. Do not fall into the trap of ordering inexpensive audio devices to help check a box on your to-do list. Engage a subject matter expert who can walk you through the various solutions that align with your organization’s needs and budget.  

Call One, Inc. is an authorized reseller of professional headsets by Jabra, Poly, EPOS, JPL, Logitech, Yealink, Cisco, Shokz, and more. How can we help?  

Best Bluetooth Headsets for Computer and Mobile Connectivity

Best Bluetooth Headsets for Computer and Mobile Connectivity

2022 is just around the corner, and many businesses are still in a state of uncertainty. Are they heading back to the office, staying remote, or adopting a hybrid work model? Regardless of the work model, employees need to communicate internally and externally to maintain business continuity.  

Today people work in various environments throughout their day or workweek. Many use collaboration platforms like Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and Cisco Webex on laptops and mobile devices. Professional and business-grade headsets are a great way to ensure your team members can hear and be heard for more productive meetings and calls.  

Fortunately, there is no shortage of headset options that offer USB and Bluetooth connectivity. A primary difference between consumer and business Bluetooth headsets is a USB dongle. I am frequently asked, “Why do I need a USB dongle?” There are many reasons that I share in this blog post link. I have tested several Bluetooth headsets paired directly with my laptop. While most Bluetooth headsets will pair, I experienced connectivity stability issues, audio input, and output issues, and a lack of call control (answer/end, mute, volume up/down) from the headset when using popular business collaboration platforms. 

View all current models of professional headsets for mobile and softphone use here

You can see our headset mic tests and comparison videos below!  

Best Bluetooth Headsets for Computer and Mobile Connectivity

 

Jabra Evolve2 75 and Poly Voyager Focus 2 

These two headsets check all the boxes.  

  • ANC Speakers 
  • Strong Noise Canceling Mics 
  • Compatible and Certified with all major collaboration platforms 
  • Long Battery Life 
  • Use as Corded USB Audio Device 
  • Mute by rotating boom arm up 

See the Jabra Evolve2 75 in action! 

See the Poly Voyager Focus 2 in action!  

Buy from Authorized Resellers 

Suppose your business or organization is seeking headsets for your team members. In that case, I strongly recommend that you buy from an authorized reseller like Call One, Inc. who has almost 35 years of headset experience. They can help answer any questions, make unbiased recommendations, and ship anywhere in the US to include commercial and residential addresses. Contact us!   

Headsets with the best Noise Canceling Mics (For Now)

I’m not a fan of defining a single thing as “best.” Daily I get asked, “What’s the best headset?” my response is, “What is the use case? What are you trying to do? What are you connecting to? What’s your budget?” What is best for your use case may not necessarily be best for someone else. One size does NOT fit all when it comes to headsets. There are many factors to consider, including:  

  • Connectivity (desk phone, mobile phone, PC, Mac, a combination) 
  • Compatibility with your voice, video, and collaboration platforms (i.e., Zoom, Microsoft, Cisco, 8×8, etc.) 
  • Single or multiple work environments/locations  
  • Personal preferences (wearing styles, corded, wireless, etc.) 
  • Organizational restrictions (i.e., some companies restrict Bluetooth headsets) 
  • Support – Leading brands can offer global support  
  • Budget 
Headsets with the best Noise Canceling Mics

I have over twenty years in this industry and test models from all the leading brands of professional headsets like Jabra, Poly, EPOS, and Logitech and less-established and up-and-coming brands like JPL, Yealink, AfterShokz, and everything in between. To help people and businesses make more informed purchasing decisions, we share headset mic performance videos via the Call One, Inc. YouTube Channel. Contact an authorized reseller if you would like to discuss headset options for your business.  

There is a difference between consumer and business-grade headsets—my top picks for business-grade headsets with the best noise-canceling mics by various categories.  

Headsets with the best Noise Canceling Mics

My Top Picks 

Desk Phone + Computer + Mobile DECT Wireless Headsets

Desk Phone + Computer DECT Wireless Headsets 

Computer + Mobile Bluetooth Wireless Headsets with ANC Speakers and Boom Mic 

Computer + Mobile Bluetooth Wireless Headsets with ANC Speakers and Boomless Mic 

Computer + Mobile Bluetooth Wireless Headsets – Discreet On-the-go 

Desk Phone + Mobile Bluetooth Wireless Headset 

Desk Phone DECT Wireless 

Corded QD Contact Center Headsets (require separate interface/adapter/cable depending on what you are connecting to) 

Corded USB Contact Center Headsets 

Corded USB Office Headsets with ANC Speakers 

Corded USB Office Headsets 

Please note there are more categories available depending on your industry, work style, and workspace. I want to get across key points that one size does NOT fit all, and there is no “best” headset. Your individual or team members’ work style and workspace will determine which headset is best for them. If you need help, contact an authorized reseller like Call One, Inc., who has close to 35 years of experience and is a Nationally Certified Women’s Business Enterprise!  

Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series

Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series – Solid solution for Work from Anywhere

The Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series is a solid solution for work from anywhere! Today’s hybrid work landscape includes corporate offices, branch locations, home offices, third spaces, and everywhere in between. Poly’s Voyager 4300 UC series are Bluetooth headsets that provide flexibility, connectivity, wireless freedom, and affordability!  

Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series

Flexibility & Connectivity 

The Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series out of the box supports PC/Mac connectivity via the included BT700 USB Adapter (dongle) and to your mobile devices via Bluetooth. Order the optional *Spare Voyager Office Base in UC and Microsoft variants if you require desk phone connectivity. You gain ultimate flexibility with these connectivity options, making for a solid hybrid work solution. You can have the Spare Voyager Office Bases in the corporate offices for connectivity to desk phones, and team members can take the Voyager 4300 series headset to use during their commute or from their home office.  

  • Voyager 4300 UC Series: Connects to PC/Mac via BT700 USB-A or USB-C adapter and a mobile phone via Bluetooth v5.2 
  • Voyager 4300 UC Series with Voyager Spare Office Base*: Connects to a desk phone (via telephone interface cable), computer (via USB-A or USB-C cable), and mobile (via Bluetooth) Line 3

Microsoft Teams certified versions include a dedicated Microsoft Teams button.  You can tap your headset Teams button to open and use the Microsoft Teams desktop app quickly. 

  • When not on a call, tap your Teams button to view Microsoft Teams app on your computer.  
  • When your connected USB adapter LED pulses purple, tap your Teams button to view Teams notifications.  
  • Note: Teams model and Teams desktop application required. Teams mobile application is not supported. 

What’s in the Box? 

The Voyager 4300 UC Series are available in single and dual-ear headband wearing styles to support team member preferences. They are available with or without a charging stand, not to be confused with the Spare Voyager Office Base. The Charge Stand acts as a place to set your headset down to charge. The Charge Stand does not offer additional connectivity options.  

  • Voyager 4300 UC Series without Charge Stand: Carry case, BT700 USB adapter, and charging cable (Charging cable length: 1.5 meters/ 4.9 feet) 
  • Voyager 4300 UC Series with Charge Stand: Carry case, BT700 USB adapter, Charge Stand, and charging cable. (Charging cable length: 1.5 meters/ 4.9 feet) Line 2
Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series

Professionals who prefer hands-free calls from their computer, mobile phone, and desk phone* are great candidates for the Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series. Business and IT leaders looking for hybrid work solutions for their team members should consider the Voyager 4300 UC Series. 

Wireless, Battery Life & Wired 

The Poly Voyager 4300 headsets are Class 1, Bluetooth v5.2, and supports multipoint connectivity. The headset can connect to two devices simultaneously and remembers up to eight devices.  

Supported Bluetooth profiles: A2DP, AVRCP, HSP, HFP 

Poly claims a wireless range of up to 50 meters or 164 feet from the Bluetooth adapter, and if connected via the Spare Voyager Office Base, they claim up to 91 meters or up to 300 feet. Please note that multiple factors can impact Bluetooth wireless range, including other Bluetooth and wireless devices, walls (type of building material), furniture, etc. We test wireless range and share in our YouTube videos.  

The Poly Voyager 4300 headsets provide up to 24hrs of talk time and up to 47 hours of listening time when used with the BT700 USB adapter. It takes 1.6 hours for a full charge, and there is a fast charge option that gives you up to 10 hours of listening time after 15 minutes of charging. You get up to 50 days of standby time.  

Should you forget to charge the Poly Voyager 4300 headset or are experiencing Bluetooth density problems, you do have the option to connect to a PC via the included USB-C cable and use it as an audio device. This is a great feature to ensure maximum uptime!  

Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series

Poly Lens Desktop App (for individual) & Poly Lens (for mass deployments) 

Customize your Voyager 4300 headset and ensure optimal performance by keeping software and firmware updated via Poly Lens App. Poly Lens App provides:  

Poly Lens Overview 

Insights you can act on. Management you can scale. 

Now you can make collaboration better for every user in every workspace. Poly Lens gives you a window into collaboration environments across your entire organization, with a spotlight on how spaces and devices are being used. Get a clear picture of what’s working, and where you can improve and take control with fast device onboarding. Cloud access delivers flexibility, agility, and security, adding value without heavy IT lifting. No need to buy servers means more bang for your budget. Everything you need to make the most of your workspace is right at your fingertips. 

Poly Lens is different from traditional Poly solutions where customers must first purchase a product from Poly before starting to use the service. Poly Lens allows a customer to use the basic service for free and users can self-enroll and begin using the service immediately. 

Poly Lens & Lens Desktop App Supported Devices 

Check out this discussion about Poly Lens with a Principal Solutions Architect at Poly! Watch Video: https://youtu.be/FfcIwlWk61U  

Microphone and Technology 

The Voyager 4300 UC headsets include a flexible noise-canceling boom with dual microphone Acoustic Fence technology. There is easy access mute button on the microphone boom. Some softphones require installing Poly software to enable device call control (answer/end and mute) functionality.  

Performance 

The Poly Voyager 4300 UC Series seems to check many of the boxes when it comes to Bluetooth headsets for professional use. How do they perform? How well does the microphone with Acoustic Fence technology work against real-world sounds and noises? Check out this Poly Voyager 4300 Overview and Mic Tests video! Watch and hear for yourselves how well this headset performs. If you would like to learn more about this and all Poly audio and video solutions, contact us! We’re an Authorized Poly Platinum Partner with almost 35 years helping people do their business better.  

Consumer vs Business Headsets

Consumer vs. Business Headsets

I strongly recommend you utilize professional, business-grade headsets versus consumer models when using UC platforms from Zoom, Microsoft, Cisco, RingCentral, 8×8, etc. This recommendation extends to all personal and group audio and video devices, but I will focus on headsets to keep it short. 

I have tested leading consumer headset models, including the Apple AirPods, AfterShokz Opencomm, Sony WH-1000XM4, Microsoft Surface Headphones 2, Bose QuietComfort 45, and others. (Click on the hyperlinks to watch the test videos) 

Many of the models I listed will pair and provide an audio path. Over time, I experienced instability with the Bluetooth connection, mainly with the transmit/input audio. Most consumer Bluetooth headsets are designed primarily for listen-only. And I can’t lie, some of them sound fantastic! Especially the Sony WH-1000XM4 and Bose QuietComfort 45. The other challenge is the lack of call control. Meaning, you can’t answer/end calls from the headset. You must use your mouse. And in some cases, I had challenges muting the microphone. Other times, I experienced being able to hear but not be heard and vice versa when in various UC platform calls and meetings. 

These consumer models can be incredibly frustrating for the IT teams that have to manage the Help Desk Tickets for these consumer headset issues. 

Consumer vs. Business Headsets

Business headset models are compatible, optimized, and certified to work across all the major communications and collaboration platforms used in business. Leading brands like Jabra, Poly, Logitech, EPOS, and Yealink work closely with the platform providers to develop headsets that function and perform optimally in their environments.  

Organizations should develop new audio and video device standards to support this new normal of hybrid work, remote work, work from home, and work from anywhere. Certified headsets meet a broad range of requirements set forth by the platform providers like Microsoft to provide the best possible end-user and administrator experience. One of the first questions asked when seeking help from Microsoft is whether or not you are using a certified device. Contact us! We can help your business select the appropriate headsets.  

In a previous blog post, Devices Make the Experience; I shared these critical differences between consumer and business devices:  

  • Engineered for different uses 
  • Sound quality 
  • Call quality 
  • Connectivity 
  • Packaging 
  • Warranty 
  • Pre-sales Support 
  • Global Support 
  • Ongoing Commitment 
  • Incentives 
  • Device Management Software

A frequently asked question is, ‘Why do I need a USB Dongle?’ I answer the question in this blog and video. The dongle is a crucial difference between consumer and business Bluetooth headsets for use with a computer. For example, Microsoft has the Microsoft Surface Headphones 2, which is their consumer model. The Microsoft Surface Headphones 2+ is their business model certified for Microsoft Teams and includes the Microsoft Surface USB Link. Watch this video playlist comparing the Microsoft Surface Headphones 2 and Surface Headphones 2+.  

The last thing to note is where you buy these devices matters. In my blog, Why buy Certified Devices from Authorized Resellers, I share the potential risks of buying through unauthorized sources. It’s best to go through an Authorized Reseller in your region. Authorized Resellers like Call One, Inc. agree to adhere to manufacturers’ policies to ensure customers receive quality products and services designed for their geographic territory. Authorized Resellers undergo extensive education, training, and certification to meet the manufacturers’ requirements to position the appropriate solutions based on your organization’s use case.  

In today’s “work from anywhere” landscape, the headset needs will vary. Contact us! Call One, Inc., and its partners can help identify headsets that align best with your team members’ work style and workspace.  

Devices make the experience

Devices make the experience

The Voice of your Brand 

How often have you contacted a business and had a hard time hearing them or spent a lot of time repeating yourself because they couldn’t hear you?  Daily, your team members communicate externally with clients and partners and internally with team members via voice or video. The audio and video quality is a direct reflection of your brand. How important is the voice of your brand?  

The appropriate audio and video devices make the experience. Your organization may have deployed a premium collaboration platform that provides all the required elements for your teams to collaborate. However, if you didn’t place effort into selecting the proper audio and video devices for your team members, the overall user experience and productivity may suffer.  

Where, when, and how people work today vastly differ from pre-pandemic days. Your team members need the right tools that support the mix of in-office, on-the-go, and remote-work locations. In a previous blog post, I shared the importance of audio to have a productive video meeting. At the height of the pandemic, many organizations provided a stipend or reimbursement and shifted audio and video device selection decisions to their employees. Many opted for consumer models because most folks aren’t aware of the difference between consumer and business-grade devices.

Consumer vs. Business Devices   

Devices make the experience

There are differences between consumer and business audio and video devices. Jabra lists these differences between consumer and professional headsets in their blog:  

  • Engineered for different uses – Professional headsets are engineered to elevate the professional experience. In a hybrid world where we work increasingly between the office, home, and co-working spaces, they enable us to transition seamlessly between places and tasks to maximize our productivity and flexibility. You can make office calls in the morning, listen to a podcast on the train home at lunchtime, and deliver that important presentation from your home office in the afternoon, all with one headset. 
  • Sound quality – Professional headsets are purpose-built to protect your ears, deliver clear audio, lower fatigue, and give your ears the best experience possible. 
  • Call quality – This is one area where professional headsets come out on top. Advanced technology, number of microphones, and boom arm make it possible for improved speech isolation that is often not possible with consumer headsets due to where and how mics are situated. 
  • Connectivity – Professional headsets provide a more comprehensive range of connectivity options to support business desk phones, computers, and mobile devices. Manufacturers of professional audio devices work with the leading communications and collaboration platform providers to develop solutions to support a broad range of use cases, devices, and environments. Select platforms like Microsoft Teams have created certification programs for peripherals such as headsets, speakerphones, webcams, and monitors to ensure they offer rich audio and video quality. Additionally, certified devices meet requirements to provide true plug-and-play and call control for a better experience for the end-users and those responsible for managing the devices. 
Devices make the experience

Other differences between consumer and professional or business-grade devices include:  

  • Packaging Business-grade solutions packaging is typically minimal and designed for mass deployments  
  • Warranty Business-grade solutions often provide a longer warranty than consumer models.  
  • Pre-Sales Support – Authorized Resellers can help guide customers with device selection for professional-grade devices. They can also coordinate virtual demos or physical demos for pilots and proof of concepts.  
  • Global Support – Leading device manufacturers support customers across multiple industries and all sizes, including international organizations. Some even offer dedicated support teams for large global customers. 
  • Ongoing commitment – Business communications and collaboration technology are rapidly advancing. The manufacturers and authorized resellers will keep you informed and educated on the latest and greatest so you can plan accordingly.  
  • Incentives – Business customers often have access to special programs, promos, and offers. 
  • Device Management Software – Professional device manufacturers like Poly, Jabra, EPOS, Logitech for Business, and others provide device management software to support distributed and remote workforces. This software allows administrators and IT managers to deploy, monitor, manage and maintain one or thousands of audio and video devices globally. Check out this video with a panel of experts from Poly, Jabra, EPOS, and Logitech discussing how device management software benefits businesses.  

A pair of consumer wireless earbuds may be adequate in a quiet environment for short voice calls. However, what is the audio quality and comfort level for longer, more complex calls? What if you are in a noisy location while in a Zoom or Microsoft Teams audio or video call from your laptop? Can you hear and be heard? Can the other party make out what you are saying? I challenge you to record your meetings or calls and playback to review the audio quality. Some clients and colleagues are candid and will inform you if the audio quality is poor. However, many will not and may leave the call with a poor impression. Worst, they may have missed vital information you were trying to convey.  

So many audio and video device choices! What solutions are best for your business? 

There are thousands of personal and group audio and video devices available today. It can be overwhelming as you start the process of identifying and selecting which solutions are best for your business. Fortunately, there are Authorized Resellers like Call One, Inc. who can help. Authorized Resellers adhere to manufacturers’ policies to ensure customers receive quality products and services. Additionally, their team members undergo extensive education, training, and certification to meet the manufacturers’ requirements to position the appropriate solutions based on your organization’s use cases.  

When teams were working in controlled office environments, it was easier to establish a set of device standards that would suit most. Today, business and IT leaders need to take a step back and profile their organization. Poly has done research that shows 92% of employees in a typical enterprise can be categorized into six different workstyles. Identifying the different work styles in your organization is the first step. Then you can outfit employees with the audio and video tools they need for the way they work. There are wireless headset options, corded USB headsets, corded and wireless headsets with Active Noise Canceling (ANC) speakers, and a wide range of webcams for desktop video. Some partners offer personal bundles and kits that include an audio and video device! Take a look at these incredible bundles! These kits simplify the process by reducing SKUs, streamlining deployment, supporting a wide range of work styles and budgets. 

Poly Studio P Series Kits include the Poly Studio P5 Webcam and your choice of audio device.  

Logitech offers these personal video collaboration kits that include a choice of webcam and Logitech Zone headset!

JPL has created this conferencing bundle.  

Konftel Video Kits 

Do you like one brand’s webcams but another’s headsets? Would you like to create a bundle that includes a webcam, headset, and speakerphone? An authorized reseller like Call One, Inc. can build custom soft bundles from multiple brands to support your team members’ work styles. With our Agent-in-a-Box Service, we can package in a single box and ship directly to your employees’ doorsteps anywhere in the United States. Contact us!  

What about audio and video solutions for small, medium, and large meeting spaces? 

Devices make the experience

Video-enabling meeting spaces, especially huddle and small to medium-sized rooms, is not as complex as it once was. Due to advances in technology and cloud-based collaboration platforms, there are affordable, easy to set up and use all-in-one video bars that simplify the process. Most video bars only have two cables to connect, power and USB. Still, have questions? How can we help? Check out available video bars from Poly, Jabra, Logitech, Konftel, VDO360, and Yealink at this link: All-in-One Video Bars – Solutions for small and medium-sized meeting rooms.  

Video Solutions by Space

Video Solutions by Platform 

Where can I see these solutions in action?  

A benefit of working with an Authorized Reseller like Call One, Inc. is we test a wide range of audio and video devices from multiple brands in real-world scenarios. Leading brands have experience centers in select metro areas, and subject matter experts sprinkled across the US. You can schedule a virtual demo for any of the video conferencing solutions by contacting an authorized reseller. Contact us! Check out our videos on the Call One, Inc. YouTube channel

Conclusion 

The voice of your brand is important. To ensure that your team members look and sound their best, you must choose business-grade audio and video devices. Work with an authorized reseller and develop device standards to support the different workstyles in your organization and encourage your team members to select business solutions over consumer models. Deploy device management software to monitor and manage the devices and reduce help desk tickets. Today people can work from anywhere. Make sure they have the proper devices that will provide a better experience for all. If you need help, feel free to contact us!  

Auuthorized Reseller

Why buy Certified Devices from Authorized Resellers

It can be highly convenient and budget-friendly to shop online; however, buyers beware. Many unscrupulous, unauthorized vendors selling audio and video devices online come with several risks attached.  

Potential Risks Buying from Unauthorized Resellers 

  • The product is of unknown origin, previously used, or counterfeit 
  • Unauthorized resellers often deal in grey-market goods- those designed for one region or market, but exported to another without the manufacturers’ approval. Since they are designed for other regions, they may have product information in foreign languages and different power accessories. 
  • The product may be resold as “unused” – which is not a new product 
  • Used or open-box product is often misrepresented and sold as new, shipped in bulk packaging, and may have missing documentation or accessories. Used goods are often found at Internet auctions or marketplaces like eBay and Amazon, and may be for sale at vastly lower prices. 
  • The product includes software that is no longer supported by the manufacturer & requires updates to prevent network vulnerability 
  • The product is missing key accessories or components required for your region to ensure the product will work as needed 
  • If the product does not work properly, you will not be able to obtain support or a replacement under warranty 
  • The product is not eligible to be supported by manufacturer services. 
  • The product is not eligible for any manufacturer trade-in promotional programs. 

Why Buy from Authorized Resellers 

Authorized Resellers like Call One, Inc. agree to adhere to manufacturers’ policies to ensure customers receive quality products and services designed for their geographic territory. Authorized Resellers undergo extensive education, training, and certification to meet the manufacturers’ requirements to position the appropriate solutions based on your organization’s use case. Contact us to learn more.   

Additional Benefits Buying from Authorized Resellers 

  • New product shipped in manufacturers’ original packaging with original manufacturer accessories and support documents. 
  • Manufacturers’ product warranty support. Warranties vary across manufacturers. Contact us to learn warranty terms for each brand. 
  • Pre-and Post-sales assistance from team members, who have the necessary qualifications and training, and who have access to additional manufacturer resources, sales, and technical personnel. 
  • Access to manufacturer promotions and special incentives available only to Authorized Resellers 
  • Direct access to a live person who can help via phone or email! 

What are we Authorized to Sell? 

Call One, Inc. can help customers with Office and Contact Center Headsets, Personal and Group Video Collaboration Solutions, Samsung Enterprise Mobility Solutions, UVC Light Disinfection DIY Solutions, and Services.  

We are a Poly Platinum Partner, Jabra One Premium Partner, Logitech Video Collaboration Gold Partner, JPL Authorized Reseller, Yealink Authorized Online Reseller, Cisco Premier Certified Partner, Samsung Mobility Titanium Authorized Reseller, EPOS Authorized Dealer, and more.  

Woman-Owned Business Certification 

Call One, Inc. has been in business since 1987 and has been a Nationally Certified Women’s Business Enterprise  and Woman-Owned Small Business by WBENC since 2001. These certifications provide further affirmation that we are a legitimate business. To become certified, business owners undergo a thorough vetting process, including review of business documentation and a site visit. 

Because of this thorough process, WBENC Certification is considered the gold standard for women-owned business certification and is accepted by more than 1,000 corporations, in addition to many states, cities, and other entities. 

Why Buy Certified Devices 

The global pandemic created a massive shift to work from home and the utilization of cloud-based collaboration platforms like Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Google Meet, and others. After almost two years working remotely and in hybrid environments, many have learned there is a difference in user experience and performance quality when using a certified vs. a non-certified device. The reason is certified devices are developed and designed with a set of requirements set forth by the UC platforms. The peripherals certification program ensures USB peripherals (such as headsets, speakerphones, webcams, and monitors) offer rich audio or video quality. Certified devices work (plug & play) with no extra configuration required and offer call control. The products provide an excellent experience for end-users and administrators. 

Not all certifications are platform-specific. General UC certifications are issued to products that fulfill the basic requirements for professional use, such as multi-device connectivity, enhanced call quality, and remote call control.  

Additional Support 

You also get added product support from the UC partner and the peripheral or end-point provider when you have a certified device. This line of support between the peripheral manufacturer and the UC partner allows them to work together to solve any issues that may arise with a product or platform.  

Latest Feature Updates 

UC platforms are continuously providing system updates. When UC platforms provide updates, you can update all devices immediately, no matter where they are. In a hybrid world where teams are distributed between different locations, what would otherwise be a major IT challenge becomes a simple system update. An added benefit for IT teams is the remote device management capabilities of certified devices. Leading manufacturers offer device management software to support individuals with desktop applications as well as large global enterprises. Learn more in this blog and video featuring experts from EPOS, Jabra, Logitech, and Poly.  

Conclusion 

If the voice of your brand matters, it is essential to select certified audio and video devices. Certified devices will ensure your team members can hear, be heard, and be seen. To avoid the multiple potential risks, elect to purchase through an authorized reseller that supports your geographic territory. Leading brands like Jabra, Poly, and EPOS provide an online partner locator. Call One, Inc. is an Authorized Reseller that supports customers in the United States. How can we help? 

References:

Jabra – Why use a Certified device

https://www.jabra.com/wheretobuy/authorized

https://www.poly.com/us/en/partners/why-buy-authorized

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoftteams/devices/usb-devices

https://explore.zoom.us/docs/en-us/zoom-certified.html