Distracted driving is one of the major causes of road accidents in the US and just about any other country that you will visit. According to the National Safety Council, an average of 1.6 million accidents occur every year due to texting while driving. And it’s sad because there is an easy way to overcome this. Modern cars come with Bluetooth enabled stereo systems that facilitate hands-free mobile use. This way your eyes will stay on the road and your hands won’t leave the steering wheel.
But if you have an old model car, it will not be as easy for you since the car stereos lack Bluetooth support. So you have two options. Upgrade your stereo system, which will likely cost you a lot, or use a Bluetooth speakerphone. Personally, I chose the latter. I did not see the point of upgrading a perfectly fine system just to add Bluetooth functionality. The Bluetooth speakerphones are cheap, do not require any expert installation and I can easily carry them between cars if I happen to have two. I don’t.
The speakerphones can be positioned at a place most convenient for you but I would recommend attaching them to your sun visor. The sound will be clearest when it’s coming from right above your head. Which also makes them a great alternative option if you are not getting the best sound quality from your car stereo.
And now to the most important part. Which is the best Bluetooth speakerphone to use for your car? I have just the perfect ones for you. Not one, not two, but 5 great speakerphones to facilitate a smooth hands-free experience. Then probably we can reduce the sickening number of accidents. In fact, if you don’t think a call is important enough just ignore it. The speakerphones provide a great way to do this. You can even dictate a quick message to the caller. So, here we go.
1. Jabra Freeway
Our Rating: 9.8/10
- Has three speakers for the best sound performance
- Has an FM Transmitter to project sound to car speakers
- Great quality mic with effective noise cancellation
- Has spoken caller ID
- Allows 2 simultaneous connections
- Vast voice command system
- Sound projected to car speaker has echo at high volumes
Battery life: 14hrs | Standby Time: 40 days | No.of speakers: 3 (7Watts) | Range: 33 feet
I have been using the Jabra Freeway for a while now and I will tell you right off, this is the best Bluetooth speakerphone you can get for your car. When I first got the Jabra Freeway, the main objective was to test it for a review. You can read my full review here. But then I fell in love and decided to keep it. Here is a breakdown of what makes the Freeway such a great BT speakerphone.
First and definitely my favorite is that the Freeway comes with 3 speakers of 7 watts each. And so even before you have had a chance to test it, you already know that the sound performance will be great. Almost all the other BT speakerphones have a single 2W speaker. Admittedly, it does not pack the same amount of punch like you would get from a Bluetooth sound bar but it had the best music listening experience than all the other speakerphones.
In terms of hands-free phone calls, which is the main reason you are buying it in the first place, the Jabra Freeway is excellent. The dual mics complete with noise reduction technology ensure that conversations are crystal clear on both ends. Most people won’t even realize that you are not speaking directly through your phone.
This speakerphone also comes with an FM transmitter that allows you to project audio to your car speakers. The only problem with this is that you will get echos at high volumes.
The Freeway can go for about 20hrs of talk time and 40 days of standby time. This is slightly less than all the other speakers on our list but what do you expect when it has to power three 7W audio drivers. The motion sensor feature is a nice addition that will help you save energy. The Freeway automatically shuts down after a long period of inactivity and will be triggered back on when it senses some motion.
It is also responsive to voice commands allowing you to receive or ignore calls without touching your mobile phone. If your phone is compatible with Bluetooth Phonebook Access Profile (BPAP), the Freeway will speak out the caller’s name. The speakerphone can remember up to 7 devices but allows simultaneous use for just two.
The Jabra Freeway is a feature-rich gadget that will be an absolute pleasure to won. The only thing that I can think of that would make you not want this speaker is the price. It is a little on the upside but even then, I would tell you to make a little sacrifice. But if that is something you cannot compromise on. I still got you. There are more affordable speakerphones on our list. Read (full review).
2. Motorola Sonic Rider
Our Rating: 9.0/10
- Outstanding battery performance
- Excellent noise cancellation feature
- Has a low battery warning
- Spoken caller ID
- Allows 2 simultaneous connections
- Sound volume not loud enough for noisy environment
Battery life: 45hrs | Standby Time: 5 months | No.of speakers: 1 (2Watts) | Range: 33 feet
Motorola is a big brand that needs no introduction. But I will introduce you to the Sonic rider, one of their best Bluetooth speakerphones yet. The gadget comes with a single 2W speaker but the sound performance is amazing. It also includes a Mic with exceptional noise and echoes cancellation and so you can expect to have some of the clearest conversations with this baby.
Unfortunately, if you have any plans to use your speakerphone to listen to music, The Sonic rider will not do that for you. The 2W speaker does not pack enough punch to make the experience worthwhile. But it will be great for listening to your favorite podcasts.
However, it’s the battery life that really stands out for me when using the Motorola Sonic Rider. At full charge, this speaker will give you about 45hrs of talk time and an incredible 5 months on standby.
It is responsive to voice commands and you can easily accept or reject calls using “Answer” and “Ignore” commands. There is also a prominent physical button on the device that you can use to manually pick and end calls. To avoid any surprise power depletion, the speakerphone will notify you via voice when the battery capacity is critical. And if your phone supports the BPAP it will announce the callers by their caller ID. These are features that you will usually find on the more expensive speakerphones.
On the downside, the voice command feature does not allow you to initiate a new call. For that, you will need to integrate it with your phone’s virtual assistant like Siri and Google assistant.
The Motorola Sonic Rider can connect up to two devices concurrently and can remember 6 devices. It has a range of about 33ft.
3. Avantree ck11
Our Rating: 8.9/10
- Great hands free call performance
- Responsive to voice commands
- Allows 2 simultaneous connections
- Has built-in motion sensors
- Not great for music listening
- Sound quality not great for noisy environment
Battery life: 22hrs | Standby Time: 25 days | No.of speakers: 1 (2Watts) | Range: 33 feet
The Avantree ck11 is a simple BT speakerphone with a minimalistic approach in its design. It only features 3 buttons. The power button on the sides, a button to mute the microphone and a rotary knob that adjusts the sound volume. The knob can also be pressed inside to receive or end a call manually. Press it once to accept a call and long press for about 3 seconds to reject a call. The knob also serves as the pairing button.
The overall build is not the most durable but it is what you would expect from that price point.
The ck11 comes with one 2W speaker coupled with a mic that has great noise and echoes reduction features. The sound performance on calls is perfect but only in the less noisy environments. This is not the best speakerphone to use if you have a truck. It will be hard to be heard over the roaring engine. It has a decent performance on music but I would advise that you just stick to calls.
The Avantree ck11 does not have an inbuilt voice command system but it can be integrated with Siri and Google assistant for seamless hands-free interaction with your mobile device. This will even give you the ability to dictate messages to your phone. The maximum number of devices this BT speakerphone can remember is 2.
To fully charge the Avantree ck11 then you need 2-3 hours. This is enough power to last you 22hrs of continuous talk time and 25 days of standby mode. The device automatically shuts down when your Bluetooth disconnects and has motion sensors that will turn it on automatically when you open your car doors. This is a great way to help save battery power.
Car charger and USB charging cable are included in the package. The metal clip used to attach it to the sun visor comes detached from the speakerphone so you will need to connect them first.
The Avantree does not have the sound quality of some of the other speakers on the list but it is decent and will be perfect if you are on a tight budget.
This is a relatively unknown brand with a great product and in my opinion, they are not doing enough to promote it. Just try looking it up on the internet. There is so little information about it. But everybody who has used the Supertooth Buddy has only good things to say about it. Of course, there are a few complains but when it comes to these gadgets it’s only natural.
The buddy is a compact but great sounding speakerphone that will be an excellent choice for anyone. The powerful speaker and DSP technology do a great job in reducing echo and other background noises that would hinder phone call conversations. The device can support up to two devices simultaneously and offers 20 hours of talk time. On standby mode, it can go for up to 40 days. It takes about 3hrs to reach charge completion.
Some other great features include the ability to redial the last call using voice commands and volume control call waiting. The Supertooth Buddy has the standard Bluetooth range of 33ft and connects to your phone automatically whenever it gets within range.
It’s a small portable speakerphone which means if you have different cars you can easily switch between them. Unfortunately, it lacks some great features like automatic shutdown.
Supertooth Buddy does not have the reputation of the Motorola or the Jabra but it has a really solid product that will give you great performance. And when later on everybody is speaking about it remember you heard it from us first.
5. SOAIY S-32
Our Rating: 8.5/10
- Automatic pairing with your mobile phone
- Automatic power on/off
- Compatible with both Siri and Google Assistant
- Allows 2 simultaneous connections
- You will struggle to be heard in noisy areas
Battery life: 20hrs | Standby Time: 40 days | No.of speakers: 1 (2Watts) | Range: 33 feet
I am lucky I am writing this because am pretty sure I cannot correctly pronounce the name of this speakerphone. But that does not make it a bad speaker. The SOAIY S-32 is an excellent speakerphone. It’s not expensive and comes with some really handy features. Among them is the ability to interact with it using voice commands. But most importantly, the S-32 has really great sound performance even in noisy environments. It will also be very effective in following GPS directions.
The speakerphone allows integration with Siri for iOS users and Google assistant for Android users. You can integrate it with Siri or the google assistant for Android users. Some of the voice commands supported include receiving/declining calls, last call redial, and playing music from your mobile phone. It does not speak out the caller name but it reads out the phone number.
You can also choose to take a call by manually pressing the receive button on the speakerphone. It is really prominent so you should have no trouble pressing it without looking. Like most of the other speakers in our list, the SOAIY S-32 allows two simultaneous Bluetooth connections.
The battery life is quite impressive with the ability to last up to 20 hours. If you turn on the speaker but do not connect a device in 3 minutes, then it shuts off automatically. You can turn it back on by moving anything in your car. It will sense the motion and turn on.
The SOAIY S-32 is not a speaker you use for music listening but it will be perfect for hands-free calling. You will also love it for its simplicity. It does not scream elegance but you still can’t help being attracted to it. And to close it off, I would say that for its price point then this Bluetooth speakerphone really has great features.
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Prices taken/valid at the time of review.