You love your car, and you love your iPhone. The patrolman who just pulled you over doesn’t
love the fact that you were talking on your phone while driving.
As soon as you pay the ticket, your next expense should be an iPhone car kit.
These devices use a wireless technology called Bluetooth to carry your
calls from an earpiece to your iPhone.
If your iPhone rings while you’re behind the wheel, all you need to do is tap the earpiece or the
iPhone to answer. You can talk and listen through the earpiece – and keep both hands on the
Here’s a look at the top features to consider when shopping for an iPhone car kit:
- Call Clarity: Though iPhones are wildly popular, but, depending on your carrier, the call
quality can be lacking. You need to keep this in mind when shopping for a car kit because
you don’t want to make it any worse. Some of the cheaper car kits exacerbate the iPhone’s call quality by adding static to the call. This makes it very difficult for you to hear calls, and very difficult for anyone to hear you. Sometimes, static can be reduced by bringing the iPhone closer to your earpiece. If that doesn’t solve the problem, return the kit to the store and consider buying a slightly more expensive model. Static is rarely a problem with the more expensive earpieces.
- Mount: Some iPhone car kits come with mounts on which you can dock your iPhone much
as you would a portable sat nav receiver. This enables you to see the numbers of incoming calls and easily tap the screen to answer the call. It also can replace your standalone sat nav device if you’ve purchased a sat nav app for your iPhone from the iTunes Store.
- Display: Consider a car kit with a display if you like to keep your phone in your pocket while driving. These screens will flash the numbers of incoming calls, and some even offer additional remote control of your iPhone. For example, if you’re using your car kit to stream music from your phone to your car radio, you can adjust the volume and jump to another song using the screen.
- Volume: IPhone car kits vary in speaker quality. Less expensive models often have small speakers that can be difficult to hear while driving even when the volume is turned all the way up. More expensive kits, on the other hand, offer higher-quality speakers that can overpower trucks, screeching brakes and other road noise.
- Power: Car kits require their own source of power to power the Bluetooth radio that transmits your call to and from your iPhone. When shopping for a kit, pay special attention to the manufacturer’s estimate of battery life. Also check what type of battery is required and how much it costs to replace.Some kits also will recharge your iPhone when it’s connected via your car’s cigarette lighter. This can be important if you talk a lot on the phone while driving. The iPhone’s Bluetooth chip will drain the device’s battery more quickly when it’s turned on, and you do not want to miss calls because your iPhone is dead.
There are unlimited accessories for your iPhone, whether it’s a 3G, 3GS, 4 – or even the upcoming iPhone 5. If you drive a lot, a car kit is a must-have. A car kit makes talking on the go easy – and much safer.
Car kits range in price from $50 to about $200. As mentioned above, the quality (wireless signal, call clarity and speakers) increase along with the price. If you can, test out a device in the store before buying. If that’s not possible, or you’re buying online, make sure your retailer has a generous return policy in case you are not satisfied with the quality of your purchase.