Buy Link: BerryReview Store
Sound bite: A solid upgrade; utilizes the same reliable jawbone technology, but in a smaller sexier form with customizable features.
New design: The new jawbone icon is the love child of the original jawbone and the jawbone prime. Instead of cutting down in the width of the original jawbone, as did the prime, the icon cuts down the the length of the jawbone. This exterior change actually has a physical benefit. The longer thinner prime balances the gravitational weight of the long unit on a single endpoint, the nub that holds the unit in your ear. Thus, over time users can feel a downward rotational pressure on the ear nub which can be both uncomfortable and disengage the prime from your ear. However, because the icon is wider and shorter, the gravitational pull on the icon is more evenly distributed. With a more uniform pull on the ear, there is less discomfort and a smaller probability of the icon becoming dislodged from the ear.
Other smaller design factors also make the icon a nice update. Instead of a rectangular shaped LED indicator facing away from the ear, there is a circular LED ring on the interior. It kind of reminds me of IronMan’s chest piece, which is always a plus in my corner.
New functions: The icon has a power toggle, which is a step away from the multi-functioning single button approach. I find this a bit refreshing. With previous models you had to hold down a multi purpose button for a predetermined period of time to power on or off you device. Now, you have instant control over the power status. While those few seconds don’t seem like much at first, the few seconds saved makes frequent casual use of the headset more likely. The toggle will likely also save power by minimizing the times the headset is accidentally left powered on. Unlike the original and prime, the icon charges via micro USB–saving many users the pain of an extra type of charger by using the standard Blackberry charging port. The icon also incorporates audio notifications (see below) for low power warnings and caller identification.
Voice personalities: The icon comes preloaded with a voice personality. One of: the hero, rogue, the thinker, ace, the catch, or the bombshell. On the one hand, they are gimmicky. On the other hand, customization is all the rage. If it’s easy to tailor, I say why not. The voices are not only preloaded, you can download new voices to your icon. To do so, first I had to sign up for the icon app store, wait for approval and log in. Once logged in, the webpage guides you through the steps of choosing, plugging in, and syncing your icon.
One touch settings: The icon app store also allows users to program the icon’s button to connect directly with an associated service. For instance, if you are a member of the Jott Assistant service, you can set your icon up such that when you hit it’s function button it will connect you directly with it’s service. With the Jott service you can then dictate and listen to messages in many different formats.
Buyability: For $99, this is a pretty solid headset. It gives you the top of the line Jawbone technology in the most stylish package yet. In addition, the customization features really make the unit just a little bit more fun to use. Definitely a good buy for the price.
Note: We received a demo unit from the company in order to write this review.