Technophile: Retro-style handsets for your mobile phone
Moshi Moshi POP Phone
Blending new-age fun with a vintage feel, the POP gives us the class of the traditional phone of old but with all the portability of the 21st century. Coming in a veritable rainbow of colour options, this cheeky receiver plugs straight into your mobile via the 3.5mm jack (or computer, if you get a USB adaptor), and off you go.
Finished with a rather luxuriant soft-touch texture rather than the shiny plastic of yesteryear, the POP is a pleasure to use. The sound quality is excellent and, of course, now you've got your hands free to play Angry Birds if the conversation gets tedious.
This is the handset for aspiring Don Drapers who might like to bring a splash of retro into their modern lives, or for someone who might like to stand out from the masses. But despite its jolly exterior, the POP is a quality piece of kit that should appease both hipsters and techsters alike.
At first glance it's just a slightly minimalist office telephone. But no, look again - it's a clever docking station for your iPhone. And while docked (and charging), your mobile (alas, just iPhone) uses Bluetooth to connect to the iFusion, allowing you to make and receive calls using its own receiver or speaker phone, thus keeping those nasty radiation waves away from your ear.
Although it feels weighty and sturdy on the desk, the iFusion just doesn't cut it when coupled with a design icon like the iPhone. While there is a handy USB port so you can link it to your computer for iTunes synching, after a while you'll be wanting to grab the phone yourself, making it just a rather expensive (and not terribly attractive) docking station.
With the iFusion, the landline becomes an iPhone accessory. But the question remains, why bother? Mobile phones gave us the freedom to swivel in the swivel chair as many times as we wanted without strangling ourselves on the telephone cord. This takes all that fun away again.
Banana Phone Handset
Ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ring ... Bananaphone! Oh, perhaps you don't know that song. To be honest, we're surprised it's taken this long for a phone tech developer to figure out that every person, at some stage in their lives, has pretended to talk into a banana. Well, now you can do it for real. Plug this into your handset via the 3.5mm jack and start going ape.
While it may look hugely "apeeling" and perfect for monkeying around with, it's probably not the most ideal for full-time use, feeling unsurprisingly gimmicky and with the sound quality a little on the poor side.
Although it might not deliver much in the way of potassium, the Banana Phone is likely to bring laughs a plenty. Whip this out anywhere and you'll be king of the party. You might want to keep it at bay during important business meetings, however. Unless you work for Chiquita or Del Monte.
Published: August 11, 2011 04:00 AM