Not sold on the idea of a music phone? Mavizen's MyBlu can join your regular cell and iPod together via Bluetooth 2.0 for less than $90. With this accessory (available in black and white), you can make and receive calls from your iPod, voice dial, and get caller ID on your iPod's screen. Although the MyBlu's phone controls are limited, call and music quality were quite clear.
The size of a second-generation iPod shuffle, the MyBlu measures a compact 1.5 x 1.0 x 0.5 inches and weighs less than an ounce. It features a built-in microphone and a 3.5mm jack for plugging in your own earphones. The controls mimic that of the iPod shuffle: The Play/Pause functions lie in the center with the volume and track shuttle keys arranged around it in a circle. Below the circular toggle is a round Bluetooth pairing button. We were happy to see a Hold button and an MP3/FM toggle.
We plugged our earphones into the MyBlu and then plugged the MyBlu into our iPod. (The device works with the 4G iPod, 5G iPod, as well as the iPod mini and 1G and 2G nano). Our iPod immediately recognized the MyBlu, and we heard our music instantly. Next, we paired the MyBlu with our BlackBerry 8830. We liked that when we pressed the Bluetooth and Play buttons simultaneously, the word "pair" appeared on our iPod's screen to let us know it was in Pairing mode. Our BlackBerry recognized the MyBlu when it was in Searching mode, and the two paired in less than a minute.
With our phone in our pocket, we were able to answer and receive incoming calls using the remote by pressing the center Play button, and the call quality was clear. Callers couldn't even tell we were using Bluetooth. The range of the wireless connection was quite good; we were able to hear our callers from up to 20 feet away from our phone. Though incoming numbers appear on your iPod's screen and you can accept the call from the remote, the MyBlu doesn't display contacts on your iPod. You'll have to use your phone's voice dialing capability or pull your phone out. We could easily control the volume of the call using the MyBlu's volume buttons.
The music-listening experience was very good, and we could easily access our favorite FM stations throughh the MyBlu and then switch back to our iPod's music. We enjoyed clear reception while walking around Manhattan. (You can save up to 15 presets.) When a call came in, a beep interrupted and then paused our music. Because the MyBlu uses your iPod for power, you'll have to sacrifice some playtime; we noticed a 30-minute drop in battery life.
The MyBlu is a very good accessory for iPod owners who want to be able to make calls on the go without giving up their beloved player.
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