updated 10:50 am EDT, Mon July 30, 2007
BlueAnt on Monday morning launched the Z9, a Bluetooth earpiece the company claims will break from the traditions of most headsets. At 1.5 inches long, the Z9 is one of the smallest headsets ever and is small enough to hide as a tie or shirt clip without drawing attention. The piece is also less of a burden to the ear at 0.35 ounces, BlueAnt says. Size is also said to be no obstacle to call quality as a dual microphone array actively reduces background noise and is switchable to a Max setting that ramps up filtering in particularly noisy environments.
The earpiece is also much more customizable than most headsets and will trigger different ringtones based on known and unknown contacts; users who have multiple phones or computers can pair the Z9 with up to three different devices rather than the single host of most rival designs. The Z9 can run on the higher-speed, more efficient Bluetooth 2.0 standard for up to 5.5 hours on one charge and should be available today for $100.