We’ve complained about the Jawbone before, and really hoped that Aliph would fix a couple things with the Jawbone 2 before releasing “Prime”. We were even told by more than one person that Aliph was indeed looking at the fragile ear-loop stem issue, but apparently Aliph only wanted to put forth minimal effort, and this they did with the latest Jawbone re-issue. The iPhone Blog has a review of the Jawbone Prime online, and as usual, their review is abnormally high. (Seriously, guys, do you ever give poor reviews?
All in all, the Jawbone Prime looks just like the Jawbone 2, with some refinement in the audio quality (and noise cancellation). Beyond that, the device still doesn’t have a mini-USB port on it, and instead requires the use of a ridiculous, proprietary USB cable. Then there’s the infamous ear-loop issue that we already alluded to, in which the plastic “stem” of the Jawbone ear-loops is prone to failure because it’s just a piece of lightweight plastic. How hard is it to ship ear-loops with a metal stem alongside a product that already costs $120? Fancy acoustic filtering or not, the Jawbone fails in the most fundamental category for bluetooth headsets: the ability to stay on one’s frikken head without buying countless ear-loop replacements.
With iPhone OS 3.0 to be previewed in depth later today, with support for stereo bluetooth included, maybe Aliph’s failure is moot, though. Perhaps the market for one-ear bluetooth devices is finally over, and maybe Aliph will wake up from their drunken stupor and announce a stereo headset offering soon that isn’t physically a piece of junk. In the meantime, we’re still flying with an acoustically inferior, yet far more practical Motorola earpiece. Our Jawbone 2, meanwhile, is still ear-loop-less and collecting dust as a result.