Business VoIP Featured Article

Bad To The Bone (Conduction): A Review of the Shokz OPENCOMM UC Stereo Headset

March 06, 2023

By Alex Passett, Editor

“Man, technology’s wild,” I remember saying as I put on a bone conduction stereo headset for the first time. Even in a crowd, I could feel the transducer’s vibrations through my cheekbones as the song “Flowers” by Miley Cyrus played, followed by a short audio clip from the Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend podcast. I heard it all super clearly while, simultaneously, continuing a one-on-one in-person conversation I was having, surrounded by throngs of other expo-goers.

Let me explain.

At this year’s ITEXPO in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, much of it was dedicated to its exhibitors. The exhibit hall – seemingly never-ending – brimmed with lively vendors and a whole boatload of creative products and services.

And, amidst this shoulder-to-shoulder excitement, I thankfully had the opportunity to swing by the Shokz booth to try out their OPENCOMM UC (i.e. the above-mentioned bone conduction headset).

Designed specifically for optimized work-from-home experiences, the OPENCOMM UC is engineered with 7th-generation bone conduction tech, a wireless adapter, and the signature open-ear Shokz fit. The headset’s transducer converts electric signals into mechanical vibrations that then pass through bone and are interpreted as sound waves. From what I’ve heard since (pun intended), this is also applicable for bone-anchored hearing aids and cochlear implants, other communications devices and more.

It was great to learn about all of this from Shokz’s Vice President of Marketing and Communications Jayme Schwartz. She demonstrated how easy it is to connect via Bluetooth to my smartphone, and how its wireless Shokz Loop USB-A adapter allows for compatibility with other devices, too. So while juggling my conversation with her, the ITEXPO buzz around us, and the song and podcast excerpt Schwartz played, I could hear everything extremely well. Plus what I found even more notable was how, unlike with other over-the-ear headphones or in-ear buds, I was able to speak completely naturally; no shouting-over-yourself required.

The OPENCOMM UC’s features also include:

  • Advanced DSP noise-canceling boom microphone
  • Lightweight titanium wraparound frame design
  • PremiumPitch 2.0 stereo sound
  • Up to 33 feet (10 meters) of wireless range
  • Rechargeable Li-polymer battery (170mAh battery capacity)
  • Up to 16 hours of talk time/8 hours of continuous play time
  • IP55 water-resistant protection

All in all, an article dedicated to this Shokz technology felt apt, especially with a U.S. Census Bureau survey indicating that at least 17.9% of the country’s population (so roughly 27.6 million Americans) worked from home at the end of 2021 alone. It’s clear how one can maintain solid situational awareness while wearing this headset, be it at an on-site office or at home, or even while exercising. (That’s next on my to-try list.)

“The OPENCOMM UC headset,” said Kim Fassetta, CMO of Shokz, “brings flexibility, all-day comfort, and exceptional audio quality in a more adaptable design that easily works with every type of device people use, be it at or away from their desks. With our open-ear design and superior technology that increases connection among colleagues, Shokz has designed a workplace experience that keeps you plugged in all day long.”

Edited by Greg Tavarez



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