I was very impressed with this product. I’ve had many “plug ‘n go” kits for other mobile phones in the past and I’ve always ended up binning them because I’m shouting at the cigarette lighter or the speaker volume is wrong, or something else. This didn’t have any of those problems, and it takes literally two minutes to put into your car. Here’s my review of the Ora “Safe2Talk”
This simple car kit is available from a company called Ora. As I’ve mentioned before, these guys do a huge range of accessories for probably every mobile phone in production. If you want to know a bit more about them, check out their site below.
You can also buy the Safe2Talk from YourSmartPhoneShop.com.
What’s in the box
The Safe2Talk now sells for Â£39.99. Although some people may think this is a tad expensive (compared to other “plug ‘n go” systems), let me explain that for this you’ll get a separate microphone, a cradle and a speaker / power base. Other “plug ‘n go” systems I’ve seen (for other inferior mobiles!) usually either don’t have a separate microphone, or they won’t include a cradle.
I’m going to review it along with my Tanager Smartphone, but the Safe2Talk has been designed with the Orange SPV in mind.
Here’s a little picture of the contents of the box. On the left is the microphone, in the middle is the cradle, whilst on the right is the base unit which plugs into the cigarette lighter.
You can see just how much cable there is on the microphone here – quite a lot! The sticky-pad on the base of the microphone is attached to some Velcro, so you can twist the microphone around to the optimal position even after you’ve affixed it to your car roof / dash / door etc.
In the pic above and below you can see two small clips for the cradle – these position in the back of the cradle (as shown below) and allow you to clip it into the air-vents in your car. There is also a “leg” which allows the cradle to sit correctly. Usually if you put something like this into your air-vents it’d pull the vent down, and you’d have a “droopy” looking cradle – the leg stops this and holds it up by pushing against the dashboard beneath the vent.
A close-up of the base unit, it has two buttons on it. One is for power, whilst the other is a “Privacy” button, which mutes both you and the caller – this is good if you want to ask your passenger something without the caller hearing!
Now into the car – here’s the cradle again. You can see how the “leg” at the bottom works now. Also note the design of the “hooks” – they have a straight lower edge with a hook on the end, which – along with the top section – locks into your air-vent to prevent it sliding out again.
Here’s the cradle, now locked into place with the “leg” holding it firm.
….and a front view. You can just about see the small lever on the top right which allows the cradle to extend out so you can place your SPV in. There’s also an extendable platform at the bottom, which holds the bottom of the phone in place. Here’s a couple of shots of it open…
Here’s the bottom of the base unit. It’s got two sockets – one for the microphone and one for an ear-piece – should you wish to use instead of the inbuilt speaker. The speaker/base unit also has a volume control on it, so you can find the best volume for the driving conditions. The other cable in this picture goes up to the phone.
Here’s the base unit – a green light shows when it has power. If you press the “privacy” button then the LED will show red to indicate that it isn’t in use. Clever eh ?
Next the microphone goes somewhere near the driver. Anywhere is good, as long as your voice can be heard – this is the usual place. I put the cable down the plastic trunking on the car, but you can easily thread it down the rubber seal around your door and then into the main base unit.
And that’s it really – as I said before it literally takes about 2 minutes to install. The cradle is pretty strong – I went for a drive round to test it and it held without any difficulty. I’m using www.streetmap.co.uk here, because it’s probably something I’d use out on the road.
I was just testing the speaker out here, and ran the movie trailer for Matrix: Reloaded on Pocket TV (see the movies page for more info on this!)
It’s a breeze – all system sounds are outputted through the speaker, so you can use your phone easily and it’s easy to tell when you’ve had a text message – even at night. The cradle has been designed specifically for the Orange SPV by the looks of it, and it holds onto the air-vent extremely well. If you want to get one of these excellent kits, they’re Â£39.99 and you just need to click here to purchase one. Don’t forget that you can also buy the Safe2Talk from www.yoursmartphoneshop.com. Here again are my advantages and disadvantages..
Charged constantly whilst driving – no plugs to fiddle with
No fiddly personal-hands-free kids to mess around with (with wires and headphones everywhere)
The ringing sounds come through the external speaker – no more missed calls!
The text-message / alarm / reminder / voice-mail sounds come through the speaker too.
Very easy to install.
Easy to alter speaker volume.
Mute button to allow for private conversations in the car.
Separate microphone – no shouting needed!! :)
Ample cabling given on microphone.
Having to plug the cable into the bottom of the phone manually each time, but this isn’t too bad.