Jawbone is one of the best known brands still producing Bluetooth earpieces, but as smartwatches like Samsung’s Galaxy Gear and the MyKronoz ZeSplash begin to embrace call features, so the company has adapted its latest Bluetooth earpiece to include voice control for your smartphone.
The new Jawbone Era will let wearers interact with Siri on the iPhone, or Google Now on Android devices. To let the earpiece know you want to have a chat with either virtual assistant, a button press is all that’s needed. All the usual commands you’d usually give them will now work, so you can have emails read back to you, directions given while driving, or control the phone’s music player.
It’s an interesting addition to the humble Bluetooth earpiece, and seems to be Jawbone’s response to the growing wearable technology market, of which it can really claim to be a long standing member. Voice control plays a major part of Google Glass, and is a key selling point of Android smartphones like the Moto X and the Nexus 5, so incorporating it into a Bluetooth earpiece makes perfect sense.
Jawbone says it has completely reengineered its new Era, and claims it’s 42 percent smaller than the previous model, but with improved microphones, a new earbud, and a unique audio system for a, “Very natural, lifelike sound.” Jawbone has also ditched the earloop which often made the original uncomfortable, and supplies the Era with three different sized earbuds for a secure fit.
The new Jawbone Era is on sale now for $130 including the charging case, which provides 10-hours talktime, and in four different colors. If you don’t want the case, it’s yours for $100. In addition to Jawbone’s own website, Verizon stores will be stocking the Era first, and will be joined by Apple, AT&T, and Best Buy stores on January 24.