If you can’t live without your mobile and find yourself permanently attached to your iPhone (like myself), you might want to considering investing in a Bluetooth car kit.
Parrot, Motorola and Nokia all offer a wide range of hands-free car kits with Bluetooth, voice recognition and music compatibility at competitive prices – but which kit is the best?
Courtesy of Nationwide Vehicle Contracts, I’ve been trying out the latest Bluetooth car kits on the market to find out which one offers the best value for money. This week I’ve been testing out the Motorola TK30 Bluetooth Car Kit…
Motorola TK30 Overview:
The Motorola TK30 is a hands-free car kit with Bluetooth wireless technology, impressive sound quality and iPod/iPhone music connectivity. The kit requires a professional install into your vehicle and consists of a small OLED display which is attached to the cars dashboard (looks a bit like an MP3 player) and an external microphone (fitted above your rear view mirror). Sound from the TK30 is filtered through your car speakers.
One of the first things I liked about the Motorola TK30 is how incredibly easy it is to use. After an initial setup (where I paired my mobile phone up to the unit), the system automatically connected to my phone every time I entered the vehicle and any changes in my phone book were updated straight away. All of the menus on the Motorola TK30 are controlled by the central button on the OLED display which allows you to view your contacts, select your music source or adjust your settings options with just one touch.
The Motorola TK30 is one of the few kits available on the market that allows you to connect two phones simultaneously. This kit was ideal for me as it allowed me to connect my work phone and personal mobile without any awkward set-up issues. You just simply select which phone you wish to use from the menu and the Motorola TK30 automatically displays your phone contacts. You can even put a call on hold from one mobile while you take a call from the other. Genius!
The sound quality on the Motorola TK30 was impressive with little interference or volume issues. Sound is filtered through your car speakers and the radio is automatically muted when a call is waiting, allowing you to take the call with no interference from background noise.
The Motorola TK30 also features iPod/MP3 compatibility, with a connecting cable hidden in your glovebox. After the first few days of using the system, I downloaded my favourite tracks to a USB stick as it saved me constantly connecting my iPhone to the cable. You can also choose to stream your music via your Bluetooth enabled phone but I’m not sure what the quality is like on this. I was also worried about draining the battery life on my mobile when using this feature.
My favourite feature on the Motorola TK30 was its ability to pair two phones simultaneously. I found this feature very handy as I often have to carry a work phone with me. Flicking from one address book to another was very easy. The system also told me which phone I was using before connecting my call so I didn’t have to take my eyes off the road when a call came through.
Another feature I really liked about the Motorola TK30 was the audio and on-screen reminders. Whenever I entered or exited the vehicle without taking my phone, the TK30 reminded me to take my mobile with me. Love it!
One of the disappointing features of the Motorola TK30 is the voice recognition facility. Although the system allows for voice commands, it uses the voice recognition facility installed on your mobile phone… so if you’re phone is rubbish (like mine), it didn’t work very well.
The OLED display on the Motorola TK30 also isn’t detachable, like some of the Parrot kits. This isn’t a major issue as the kit is only small but for the first few days, I was wary about leaving my car unattended incase it got broken into. I’m not sure how easy the TK30 is to steal (as can’t be used in another vehicle without an installation) but I was still wary about leaving it in view.
Sound Quality: 9/10
MP3 Compatibility: 9/10
Telephony Functions: 9/10
Ease of Use: 10/10
Overall Score: 9/10
The Motorola TK30 Bluetooth car kit is available to buy from Nationwide Vehicle Contracts with onsite installation included in the price. Nationwide Vehicle Contracts offer a wide range of Mobile Phone Accessories at exclusive discount prices. Order safely online to take advantage of special deals and offers.