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User Opinions: VisorPhone

Joe63All PDA's should be phones or vice versa

Thumbs Up

I've had it for a month and while it's not the phone my StarTac was, it's 100 times better as a phone than my StarTac was as a PDA. Sound quality hasn't been a problem and the cheap headset was fixed by a $25 investment in a good one. For all you folks that got in on the $500 ground floor of this thing...sorry, I got mine for free with my Visor Pro purchase and a one year contract with VoiceStream. My contract is 300 anytime North American minutes and 300 weekend minutes for 39.99/Mo. That compares favorably with my old Sprint PCS plan. I like the fact that the phone and Visor recharge simultaneously in the cradle. You need a Pro, Prism, or Edge for that. The phone application is very user friendly, but why can't the call history add up the minutes? There's got to be CPU capability for that somewhere. Plus, how about a dual mode analog capability? I've read another review stating that once you spend time with a Palm OS device that lets you make calls, any that don't seem incomplete. After a month with mine, I feel the same way.

whiteytechWorks like a DREAM!

Thumbs Up

Unit works great.All the features i've read about are just too cool. I did break the ant housing apart but some good glue made it better than new.

GEMicherBest Investment of $50 I ever made

Thumbs Up

Works well, good coverage in the Metro Pittsburgh Area

nemethmikMuch better than expected

Thumbs Up

I was skeptic about the phone because of the a couple of negative feedback. The phone is loud enough, its ringer tone is quite noticeable. It works with VoiceStream ISDN dial-up number. Its signal perception is better than my Motorola P7389. I hope it will work in Europe as well. Only missing features are: GPRS, GSM 1800 MHz, voice dialing, Blazer as WAP browser is not integrated with the phone.

tkornechukWorks great and is long awaited solution

Thumbs Up

The visorPhone is great. I have two issues though 1) the ringer is not loud nor configurable enough. 2) The ability to keep a record of calls is right there, but HS seems to have put a low priority on implementing the solution. I guess they are leaving room for 3-party development.

DistrachiExcellent springboard module

Thumbs Up

I've had the visorphone for a month now and i really love it. Reception in NYC is pretty good, but a little hard to get good signal inside buildings (dunno if it's VoiceStream's fault or VisorPhone's fault). Very good reception outside though, mostly 4 bars everywhere i went (Queens, Manhattan, Brooklyn) 3 bars in Westchester. Voice quality in my opinion is very good. Another New Yorker wrote a review saying DataStream is required for wireless internet, this is definitely not true. I've been surfing the web for a month and i double checked with VoiceStream Customer service that i was not subscribed to DataStream service. I do have a few complaints though. The ringer even at the loudest setting is not loud enough especially compared to regular cell phones. Would've been happier if they either included a case or atleast gave us a discount on a case. The phone software keeps details on every phone call but for some reason lacks the ability to simply add the total time up so you can estimate how many minutes you have left. The visorphone should also be able alert you of an incoming phone call without having be connected to the Visor. Not a big deal for me because i don't have any other springboard modules. These are fairly minor problems for me, overall i'm still very happy with my decision to purchase the visorphone.

StanwardBest Springboard Module to date

Thumbs Up

I am 95% satisfied with the Visorphone, as I do not have to carry two items on my belt(cell phone and Visor). This phone was engineered the right way the first time, as there is a built in 14.4kbps modem built in, as well as the right software too! The 5% unsatisfactory ratings are attributed to the service that I am forced to use. Voicestream is the only GSM carrier in Hawaii, and has poor coverage. When in buildings, people have a hard time hearing me and I have a hard time hearing them. I wish Voicestream had more cell-sites in the islands. I blame the poor battery life to the poor Voicestream service here in Hawaii. I get about half the rated battery life(Handspring claims 3 days standby and 3 hours talk time). All in all, I believe it is the best Springboard module to date.

John DiamantMini-review of VisorPhone

Thumbs Up

I posted a separate note regarding a problem I'm having with data connections. Other than that, I'm now pretty happy with the VisorPhone but I had to replace it twice (I'm on my 3rd one). The problem is a severe echo heard by people on the other end of the call whenever using a headset. This *is* a defect in the VisorPhone headset circuit which some tech support reps know about and some don't and Handspring has never admitted. Unfortunately, they don't have a proper screen in place to know which ones have the problem, so if you encounter this problem, you have to keep replacing it until you get one that doesn't have the problem. I've still heard reports of echos with a speakerphone adaptor I tried, but so far no problems with a headset (speakerphone echo is harder to avoid due to the sound carrying from the speaker to the microphone in a full duplex connection). They claim that they've "optimized" the VisorPhone for the headset that they supply with it, but I encountered the problem with multiple headsets including theirs. Further, their headset is not very good. I got a high end Plantronics headset (boom mic with noise cancelling, RF shielding, mute switch, mic volume switch) which works well with this 3rd phone module, but I still have to keep the volume on the VisorPhone somewhat low -- but loud enough -- to avoid echos. The mute is important because the VisorPhone itself doesn't offer a mute, and the RF shielding is important because the headset jack is very close to the antenna and thus causes RF noise with unshielded headsets. Another problem I encountered with the VisorPhone was that it doesn't support conditonal call forwarding changes (ability to change the forwarding after 15 seconds from Voicemail to another number), whereas my old Nokia handset does. I've learned to live without that and can still use my old Nokia handset to change the forwarding if I need to occasionally. I've also found the loudest ringer setting to be very quiet, and if you miss a call or message, lack of a persistent reminder (beep or vibrate) is an annoyance. I think some tools to provide call cost estimation using the history would be really helpful. On the positive side, the VisorPhone is advertised to work on 900MHz as well as 1900MHz, which means it works in much of the world (not where only 800MHz GSM is supported, though). That's a rare feature on mobile phones and one of the biggest advantages of GSM. Other worldphones are also expensive, so that helps with justifying the high price compared to other phones. The compact size of both phone and PDA and the integration are both good as well, though I wish PhoneMate (enables lookups without stylus for one handed operation) would work with VisorPhone. Offering vibrating ring builtin is great. The application keys, ring volume switch and status LED are well thought out. I configured my phone switch to go to the call history screen by default since I've had it autodial by accident when I had it default to the quick dial screen. I could password protect my PDA screen to avoid this, but that's a pain.

John DiamantVisorPhone with UUNET ISP?

Thumbs Up

First, my question: I've been unable to get a wireless connection working using UUNET as my ISP. Anybody do this succesfully, and if so, what's the trick? I kept the default Network and Connection settings other than the account/passwd/phone number, I believe. I've tried a few different packages (Blazer, avantgo, K-Browser) and I've only gotten a succesful connection one out of 10 times. Any hints as to what I need to do to get reliable modem/network connections? My GSM carrier is Voicestream, and I set the speed to 9600 because I believe that's as fast as their network goes. I've tried this with 3 different VisorPhone modules (different problem) with the same results.

kkaranPoor clarity, battery life short, modem option too expensive

Thumbs Down

In NYC there is no signal at all inside buildings. In the burbs, coverage is very prone to dead spots. The phone does not hold a charge a long as advertised, barely a day, less if you actually talk on it. Really good for SMS messages but I find not many people use them. The main advantage of the VisorPhone is that it has modem capabilites. However this requires the DataStream option at $29 extra per month from VoiceStream. Not really worth it when I have a direct internet connection at home and work.

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User Opinions

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Product Details
Name: VisorPhone
Company: Handspring
Size: 2.4" x 2" x 0.6"
Weight: 2.9 oz.
Memory: 96 K on Visor when inserted
Hard Cover Compatible: No
SAR: 0.48 W/kg (head), 0.22 W/kg (body)
Price: $299.00 (w/ service contract), $499.00 (w/ no contract)

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