Who would have known that 2020 would end up being such a life-changing year for many? Not only did many of our personal lives changed, but also our work lives. By that I mean that our work and personal lives have intersected in ways we never imagined and many of us are now working from home. Working from home may seem like a dream, but it presents many challenges, and one of them is being able to concentrate on work while still being aware of what’s happening in your home. The Aftershokz Opencomm helps with this specific situation in a very unique and functional way thanks to its bone-conducting technology.
The Aftershokz Opencomm was designed specifically for communications. What makes this different from almost every other headset out there is their patented 7th generation bone conducting technology and their signature open-ear design. Usually, headsets come in several flavors — on-ear, over-ear, and in-ear. The Aftershokz open-ear means that the audio unit actually sits outside of your ear, with nothing blocking your ears at all.
This has several advantages, the main one being safety and being aware of what’s going on around you. So let’s use the work-at-home crowd as an example and how they would benefit greatly by using the Aftershokz Opencomm.
Let’s say you’re at home and married and have kids, the new norm is that if you’re working at home and there’s no way you’re not going to have to interact with your spouse or your kids. However, in the past if you were running a regular over-ear or in-ear headset setup, you would not be able to hear what’s going on around you, aside from what’s going on with your computer or your phone call.That’s not the case with the Aftershokz Opencomm headset. Since there’s nothing blocking your ears, you’ll hear if someone is calling you from the kitchen, or if your child needs help with something, or if some other emergency occurs. The Aftershokz Opencomm in essence allows you to not only hear what you’re doing but also what’s going on around you at the same time.
That’s just one example. These would definitely be great for those who have young children in the house or babies and need to be constantly aware of what’s going on with them, but also be able to take calls or listen in on meetings or videos on their computer.
Moving on, the Aftershokz Opencomm actually sounds pretty good. The audio comes in clear and you’ll have no issues hearing calls from it. If you’re using it to listen to videos or even music, the audio isn’t that bad either, though it’s not going to be quite as good as through more traditional headphones. You’ll hear more of the highs and mids and not so so much on the bass side unless you stick your fingers in your ears. These aren’t really meant for super high-end audio quality, but they get the job done for what they’re intended for.
Using them is pretty simple too. There’s a dedicated button on the right for answering and hanging calls up. This also works to start and pause music. If you hold down this button, you can even engage your digital assistant on your phone. On the right side is also the volume buttons. The power button is integrated into the “+” button and these buttons also serve a double function to go forward or backward when playing music. On the left side is the mic that can be rotated and aimed to where your mouth is. You can also move it out of the way if you don’t need it.
The only thing that I do not like about the Aftershokz Opencomm is the charging system. It has a proprietary port that requires its own special cable. If you lose that cable, you’re screwed and would have to purchase another one somehow. I would have preferred if they used something more mainstream now like USB-C as a charging solution.
Aside from how they work, the Aftershokz Opencomm is very comfortable to wear. There’s no padding, but the material is very light and flexible. After wearing them for a few minutes, you hardly notice that they’re there anymore. I don’t even get any ear pains or headaches like I do with some headphones and earbuds. Know that you aren’t blocking out any outside noises with the Aftershokz Opencomm, and that’s really the whole point of these. You do get a noise-canceling mic though.
Bone conducting headsets might not be as popular or prevalent like more traditional headsets, but they certainly have their place. After using the Aftershokz Opencomm in my home work environment for about a week, I can see why someone would want to use these. For starters, being able to answer calls and talk on the phone while keeping your hands free is a huge plus. Secondly, having your ears uncovered means you can hear anything that happens around you, for example the home phone ringing, the doorbell, kids screaming, etc. It just makes you more aware at home when you have to be.
So with that said, if you are in a work environment where being aware of your surroundings is very important, the Aftershokz Opencomm is the perfect solution. They not only sound good, but they are also super comfortable and deliver as advertised.
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This review is made possible with my affiliation with G Style Magazine. These items were sent to us by the company or their PR reps for review and evaluation. It is also featured at the G Style Magazine website which is a tech blog that focuses on the fashion aspect of tech. Please visit their site for more interesting reviews on all your favorite gadgets and gear.