The distinctive functional case, all-day battery life and advanced features give you every reason to buy the HP Poly Voyager Free 60 Series Wireless Earbuds if you travel for business or spend time working on a computer and smartphone.

Enterprise workers in office settings are ideal users of these high-end and specially designed earbuds. Remote corporate employees also gain a tremendous amount of added functionality to enhance the convenience of their workday.

I have yet to find a set of earpieces that compete successfully with the features packed into these relatively small yet well-fitted dual devices.

However, the cost is also in the higher price range than most people would be willing to buy out-of-pocket. But if your needs go beyond wireless convenience for phone calls and listening to music throughout your workday, HP gives you a compelling list of reasons to plug in a pair.

Pricing and Purchasing

For some potential users, the performance outweighs the $329.95 price tag for the premium product – the Poly Voyager Free 60+ UC that comes with a touchscreen charging case and more.

Two less-endowed but still great performing versions of these earbuds start at $229.95.

The starting price gets you the Poly Voyager Free 60 model that comes with a standard charge case that offers premium call and music features. The dependability and reliability of this unit is designed for what HP calls “prosumers”.

Poly Voyager Free 60 Series Wireless Earbuds

The Poly Voyager Free 60 wireless earbuds and basic charge case, shown here in Carbon Black, are also available in White Sand. (Image credit: HP/Poly)

In addition to the HP/Poly website, you can find these earbuds at B&H Photo and other online outlets.

Be careful when searching for this product. I found it listed under the Plantronics label on Amazon and elsewhere. Based on the price and product description, such listings that are not branded as HP appear to be older units rather than the latest product releases from HP.

HP acquired Poly last August and rebranded the new release but kept the Poly moniker. For example, the Poly name is on the charge case, and even the Poly app doesn’t have an HP label.

For stepping up to $279.95, you get the Poly Voyager Free 60 UC earbuds with a standard charging case and enterprise-grade audio and music features. This edition is Microsoft Teams/Zoom-certified and designed for enterprise users.

Unmatched Premium Features

One of the really impressive performance factors of these earbuds is the Poly Voyager Free 60 UC’s ability to fight off ambient noise during calls and video sessions that affects both sides of the conversation.

This product reduces background noise during calls with Active Noise Cancellation (ANC). Between calls, the same ANC functionality reduces background noise and provides the ability to listen to music in high quality thanks to three environment settings.

One of them, Transparency Mode, lets you hear your surroundings without having to remove one or both of the earbuds. If you remove one earbud, it will pause the soundtrack playing from the connected device.

Voice production is at a premium level, stemming from the six microphones, stem design, and noise-canceling circuitry called NoiseBlock, which is AI-powered.

With the help of multi point connectivity, users can stay connected to two devices simultaneously. The technology associates the phones as Phone One and Phone Two, regardless of whether one of the devices is a speakerphone or a computer.

Smart Charge Case Does More

Another advantage of the Voyager Free 60+ UC earpiece is the unique charging case. All three Voyager models come with cases that wirelessly charge the earbuds in the rechargeable case and have Qi charging capabilities.

The free 60+ UC model goes well beyond that limited functionality. The smart charging case features a color touch screen with three control panels for customizing configuration and earbud controls.

poly voyager wireless earbuds charging case

The Voyager Free 60+ uC touchscreen charge case displays the charge status of the case and the battery level of each earpiece. (Image credit: HP/Poly)

The case charges with a USB cable that connects to a computer or wall power plug. When the earbuds are in use, their case is wirelessly connected to control voice functions showing battery charge status, listening environment settings and volume controls.

You can easily switch between connected devices. The case lets you connect to external audio sources via the 3.5 analog audio input.

intelligent design

The oval shaped design and includes three shaped rubberized ear shields that provide extra wearing comfort to the earbuds. The tips are designed to reduce pressure in the ear while providing superior audio isolation.

You can use both pieces in either ear for extended use. For long-term travel listening, for example, you can simply insert one earpiece into either ear while the other is charging in the case.

The earbuds offer up to 5.5 hours of talk time with the ANC on. If you don’t need the ANC, the usage time is even longer.

The Smart Charge Case provides up to 16 hours of additional talk time and comes with a USB-C port for charging on the go. The case also includes the BT700 Bluetooth Adapter for advanced functionality.

The inclusion of a USB-C to 3.5mm audio cable is a really neat feature that lets you plug the charging case into almost any modern device and use the earphones wherever a physical connection is needed instead of wireless connectivity. uses.

The included USB receiver tricks the host computer into pairing the earbuds without needing to open the computer’s Bluetooth stack to connect the dongle. The result is a more seamless user experience than built-in Bluetooth on a computer.

Video credit: HP/Poly

long stem functionality

The stems of the Poly Voyager Free 60 series earbuds are longer than other wireless ear devices. The oval shaped tip adds to the comfort factor and makes the earpiece very easy to hold, insert and remove.

A small button on the bottom of each stem plays or pauses music and answers calls. Press and hold it for two seconds to activate Google Assistant and offer even more functionality.

A touch sensor is located along the middle portion of each stem. Swipe it up and down to change the volume or mute the sound.

It took me a while to get used to the swiping motion to activate functions, and I didn’t find it very comfortable to use in conjunction with the smaller buttons on the bottom.

app power handy

Last but certainly not least is the Poly Lens app, available on Google Play and the App Store. You can just use the earbuds and get an excellent out-of-the-box user experience.

But I didn’t find it any less convenient to reach for my smartphone to adjust additional settings. It’s similar to using a smartphone app to aid in setting up my smart watch, and as a complement to a smart TV remote control device.

You need the app to handle software updates for the earpieces and smart charge case, and to access detailed configuration options for setting up your earbuds to your preferences. The app offers a long list of toggles and sliders to tweak every possible decibel and frequency to fine-tune your productivity and enjoyment.

Enhanced Communication Features

Advanced SideTone technology lets you be aware of how loudly you’re speaking. I never lost my boisterous vocal projection learned in my early days of public speaking classes. This special feature helps me not to strain my voice.

The earbuds are designed with a wide microphone pickup area so users can adjust the wearing position for maximum comfort.

The Poly Voyager Free 60 Series wireless earbuds are available in two colors: Carbon Black and White Sand.

Microsoft has announced a hands-on preview for commercial customers of its new Teams premium product designed to make meetings more personal, intelligent and secure.

The premium product includes many attractive features, such as:

  • Using artificial intelligence to provide live translation and intelligent recaps of meetings with autogenerated chapters and suggested action items and insights;
  • Advanced security with the use of watermarks, end-to-end encryption, and sensitivity labels to prevent copy and pasting of chat sessions;
  • Tools for creating and managing high-quality webinars;
  • Virtual Appointment Dashboard to control the end-to-end virtual appointment experience; And
  • Ability to expand company image in meetings by branding background.

“This is an opportunity for Microsoft to open up monetization opportunities beyond Microsoft 365,” said Ross Rubin, principal analyst at Reticle Research, a consumer technology advisory firm in New York City.

“You’ll get basic-level functionality, but more functionality at the higher price levels,” Rubin told TechNewsWorld.

Race for AI Solutions

The AI ​​feature does many things not done in meetings, such as providing outlines, notes and translations for their audience, said Rob Enderle, president and principal analyst at the Enderle Group, an advisory services firm in Bend, Ore.

“I expect this AI component to be the defining difference between platforms in the future,” he told TechNewsworld. “Powerful conferencing solutions are racing to see who can provide the most powerful AI-based solution.”

Intelligent Recap holds a lot of promise for helping organizations get the most out of meetings, said JP Gounder, vice president and principal analyst at national market research company Forrester Research.

“Too often, follow-ups and action items are forgotten after the meeting,” Gounder told TechNewsWorld. “Those who missed the meeting struggle to find the value of the meeting.”

“Intelligent Recap promises to automate the process of extracting follow-ups, action items, and meeting content,” he continued. “It will take some time to learn from real-world meetings, but it promises to increase the value of meetings and connect them to business actions.”

more efficient meetings

In some ways, the new tools in Teams Premium make virtual meetings more efficient than in-person meetings, said Michael Inouye, a principal analyst at ABI Research, a global technology intelligence firm.

“By more efficient, I mean making access to information from previous meetings and follow-up more streamlined and easier,” Inoue told TechNewsWorld.

He clarified that in a face-to-face meeting, any work on the whiteboard may not be included in the meeting notes. Similarly, note-taking is often not shared among participants or may be specialized to an individual’s note-taking style.

“Creating chapters and tagging recorded meetings makes searching through the archives much more efficient,” he continued. “Instead of trying to remember the date of a particular meeting by checking your notes, you can search for a topic or other information of interest.”

“These tools can benefit in-person meetings as well, because those conversations can be recorded and processed in the same way, so it’s not exclusive to virtual,” he added.

Features Too Good for Paywall

New security features in Teams Premium have also drawn praise. Forrester analyst Will McCann-White said, “The security enhancements like copy/paste controls and E2E encryption for groups are all excellent.”

However, he questioned the limitation of features to a premium offering. “It’s strange that these are divided outside of the standard Teams platform,” he told TechNewsWorld.

McKeon-White was also commended for joining the Teams Premium webinar. “There is a great need for offering webinars from a competition point of view and this will help organizations further strengthen an offering,” he added.

While praising the product’s translation feature, he also lamented its limitations. “Live translation is going to be transformative for how organizations communicate,” he predicted. “It’s a shame to see this change inside the paywall.”

One feature of Teams Premium that is getting mixed reviews is its branding feature.

Mark N., president and principal analyst at SmartTech Research in San Jose, Calif. “I think the branding-focused features are interesting and potentially different than what Zoom and Cisco’s solutions are offering,” Vena said.

“It appears that Microsoft is moving toward a more personalized experience with the premium version of Teams, which I think will be useful,” Vena told TechNewsWorld.

“The ability to create more customized experiences will be valued by some users, and I think the ability to add your brand will be valued by users who create video podcasts or conduct webinars,” he said.

ahead of time

While an interesting idea, the brand extension feature could be problematic, stressed Enderle. “Using a tool like this to push a brand requires marketing to have a direct say in the outcome, which isn’t the case here,” he added.

“It would be like providing a medical device without medical oversight,” he explained. “I don’t think you can do a brand feature without deeply involving marketing in the resulting process. That’s not the case here.

Inouye said that branding is usually not prioritized in virtual types of communication and collaboration. “Going forward, if virtual C&C becomes more widespread or more generally, I can see it becoming more valuable,” he added.

“It may be a little ahead of its time,” he continued. “No harm done, but it won’t be a significant selling point.”

Inoue said Teams Premium should help position Microsoft in the communications and collaboration market. However, he added, “it’s hard to say whether this will change the competitive landscape in a meaningful way, at least not yet.”

“Companies have reduced virtual events, which means a company may see less value from a more integrated solution,” he explained. “For a handful of events going with a third party can be as good an option as a more integrated solution.”

word of caution

Vena argued that Microsoft is playing catch-up in the video conferencing space as Zoom became the market leader during the pandemic, focusing on ease of use.

“But Zoom continues to face protests over security concerns, and Microsoft has a perceived advantage when it comes to protecting privacy,” he said. “This new solution should move the ball forward in increasing its appeal to Teams, especially with enterprise and SMB users.”

McCown-White said all of the enhancements are logical and add value to the Teams platform. “My biggest issue with Microsoft’s approach is they compartmentalized behind a paywall,” he said.

“Any time AI/ML features are divested outside of a platform, it provides an opening for competitors,” he said.

There’s a lot to like in this rollout, as Microsoft continues to evolve its AI to deliver more valuable features, noted Wayne Kurtzman, vice president of collaboration and communities research at IDC, a global market research company.

However, he cautioned: “Microsoft will need to add more benefits to maintain the premium value, as some of their competitors are likely to include some of these features in their core product. Regardless, feature innovation is likely to maintain a high velocity.