There are a number of high quality speaker docks and wireless speakers for Apple’s iOS devices. There are also a variety of telephone handset devices and conference call stations that can turn your iOS device into a desk phone replacement. I’m sure I’m not the only home office user that wishes there was a decent device that offered the best of both. The Invoxia AudiOffice ($299, link) aims to do just that.
The Invoxia AudiOffice is a unique office accessory with a unique purpose – combining an exceptional speaker with a powerful speakerphone, video calling tool, and landline replacement. It’s a very capable solution for handling phone calls, video chats, and conference calls, and looks great while doing it. It also doubles as a fantastic personal audio system for pumping tunes throughout your home or office!
From the moment you crack open the retail box, the AudiOffice makes a strong first impression. Its all-white glossy construction looks great next to the iOS devices it is designed to work with, and the dock itself is made from metal, with a thick sheet of high-gloss plastic as the top cover. It looks great on both wood desks and, as in the case of my office, glass desks, and maintains a very classy overall appearance.
Just as impressive as its aesthetics is the build quality. The AudiOffice is one remarkably solid piece of equipment. It has a definite heft, and is build with a seamless construction that makes it feel solid no matter how you hold or handle it. The quality and attention to detail put into the AudiOffice are apparent from moment one.
The dock also includes a corded handset, which rests on a small orange cradle, and can be used whenever you need a bit of privacy. The orange cradle is more than just a rest for the handset, however – it’s a smart cradle, and can automatically detect whether or not the handset is “hung up.”
Finally, we come to the 30-pin dock. The AudiOffice is designed to work with any iOS device using the 30-pin dock connector. If you have a device that doesn’t use the 30-pin connector, such as the iPhone 5, the AudiOffice can also be paired through Bluetooth.
The fact that the AudiOffice is fully compatible with the iPhone 5 is a big plus. I also appreciated the fact that the AudiOffice comes with a removable cradle attachment, enabling you to use the AudiOffice with an iPad as well.
Overall, the AudiOffice sets a high bar in terms of design and quality. It’s durable and well build, yet elegant enough to look fantastic on any desk.
The AudiOffice is an exceptional speaker, and can accomodate almost any modern device. It features a 30-pin dock for iOS devices, includes Bluetooth for pairing with the iPhone 5 or other smartphones that don’t use a 30-pin connection, a 3.5-inch jack for connecting to devices without Bluetooth, and can even be hooked up and used as a USB speaker for a Mac or PC.
The audio quality is exceptional from both the microphones and the speakers. The AudiOffice includes a pair of microphones to optimize outgoing voice quality, and features an array of four separate high quality speakers to help your calls and music sound better than they ever had before. Folks that I called with the AudiOffice had nothing but good to say about the call quality. A couple of my callers even wondered if I had gotten a new phone, as the sound quality seemed better than usual.
It’s worth noting, however, that call quality is affected by the strength of your cell signal, so if you don’t have the best cell coverage, your calls might suffer – but as long as your coverage is good, the AudiOffice delivers an overall incoming and outgoing sound quality as good or better than any I have ever heard.
The AudiOffice is also fantastic for music. The four speakers work together to provide more volume than I ever would have expected from a device as small as the AudiOffice. The speakers are also able to handle both deep bass and high treble tones without significant distortion – although both the high and low tones suffered a bit at max volume.
The AudiOffice Experience
As with most great products, the true strength of the AudiOffice lies within the experience of actually using it. The AudiOffice experience begins with an extremely simple pairing process. After plugging in and powering on the device, just plug your iOS device into the 30-pin connector. This prompts you to download the AudiOffice app, which instantly pairs your iOS device to AudiOffice.
You can also press the large silver knob to begin Bluetooth pairing. Like pairing over the 30-pin connection, Bluetooth paring is extremely quick and pain-free. The process takes less than two minutes, after which your device is ready to use with the AudiOffice.
The multi-function silver knob is perhaps the best feature of the AudiOffice. When your device is connected to the AudiOffice, tapping the knob will play or pause your music. When a call comes in, answering is as simple as either picking up the handset, or tapping the silver knob once.
If you’re using the handset, tapping the knob also sends the call back to the speakerphone, so you can rest the handset without hanging up. And last but not least, it also functions as a volume knob. The multi-function knob is so useful that there’s no need for control buttons of any sort – everything is controlled with a single knob. Elegant simplicity.
For me, using the AudiOffice means I can leave my iPhone on silent – which I keep it on for the sake of my sanity, and to be courteous to others – and still answer calls, as the AudiOffice has its own ringtones, and will ring even if the phone is on silent.
Each of the features of the AudiOffice work not only with direct phone calls – they also all work with Skype, making for a smooth and simple audio call or conferencing experience. Perhaps the most satisfying aspect of all is the fact that, when you’re finished with a call, you can just set the handset back down onto the AudiOffice to end the call. There’s nothing quite so satisfying as “hanging up.”
A desk phone mount for your iOS device might seem like a novelty to some – but many small business users find devices like the AudiOffice very useful. Invoxia has created a device that works exactly as well as advertised, and looks fantastic doing it!
From the audio quality, to the call controls, to the ability to make phone calls, Skype calls, FaceTime calls, and VOIP calls all from within the AudiOffice app (the app even downloads your contacts!), Invoxia has a a truly elegant and useful solution for anyone looking to cut the cord and replace their traditional desk phone.
For $300, this isn’t an ideal device for most consumers – but for businesses, there’s nothing like the AudiOffice in this price range. It is competitively priced for what it is, and I highly recommend it. The AudiOffice is available now for $299 through Amazon.com. For more information, visit the AudiOffice product page at Invoxia.com
- Simple, effective, and elegant design.
- Simple setup.
- Excellent sound quality.
- Compatible with the iPhone 5.
- Only includes one USB port, which is required by the handset. A second USB port for charging an iPhone 5 or iPad would be most welcome.