A Cordless Bluetooth Home Phone Review-Panasonic KX-TG Phones
Why a Buetooth Cordless Phone?
I am in the process of eliminating my landline but hate the thought of losing my cordless home phone system. The Panasonic bluetooth cordless phone KX-TG system has been a truly excellent addition and has done away with my last objection to losing the landline. The most obvious reason for the purchase was the bluetooth phone to phone capability; it uses bluetooth technology to connect to my cell phone when I am home.
Before purchasing the system I checked out several bluetooth phone adapters that would convert my current cordless phone system to bluetooth. All were very nearly as expensive as the new cordless bluetooth phones from Panasonic and reviews I read were far from complimentary of most of them. The system, on the other hand, received good reviews and the price was right. It also has many features that are rather uncommon in a cordless phone but that are much appreciated. As the batteries were getting weak in my old cordless system and one handset had been left in the rain and didn't always work I discarded the idea of the bluetooth phone adapter. Panasonic KX-TG6583
Panasonic KX-TG6583 Cordless Bluetooth Phones
The Panasonic KX-TG system is probably the handiest gadget I own and I have come to really enjoy most of the features. It is a three handset system (also available as a 2 handset system and will accommodate up to 6 handsets) with an answering machine built in, that will automatically connect via bluetooth with up to two cell phones or one cell phone and one headset. I don't use a headset, but my wife and I both have cell phones that will connect. It is possible but not necessary to have a landline at all, and I am in the process of getting rid of mine. We have set up a "charging area" for our cell phones, cameras, etc. on a counter top perhaps ten feet from the Panasonic base unit and simply plug the cell phones in their chargers and forget about them each day as we come home. No more searching for a ringing cell all over the house to answer or make a call; just pick up a cordless handset and, if necessary, pick a line to call out on. As we have chosen to port our landline number to one of the cells with an unlimited plan we also programmed the cordless phone to automatically use that line for outgoing calls. Incoming calls ring through regardless of where they are coming from.
This is a 5.8 ghz cordless bluetooth phone, dect 6.0 technology. It has a wealth of features.
• Automatically connect with up to 2 cell phones
• Ability to call out or receive on any line, with one line being chosen as preferred by the user.
• Ability to use the same ring tone on incoming calls as the cell phone uses.
• Can use the cell's phone book, or store it's own phone book available to all handsets.
• Accepts phone book copying from the cell.
• Has both visual and audible caller ID; no getting up and looking to know who is calling.
• Ability to block either calls with no number or individual user chosen numbers.
• Eco mode extends battery life; I have talked over 3 hours and still had battery life left.
• Has most, if not all, common cell phone features
• Automatically adds your local area code if calling local numbers on the cell line when using the phone book.
• Can be set to connect with bluetooth automatically or manually.
• Handsets use common AAA NiMh batteries instead of an expensive battery pack.
The only negative comment I have concerns the automatic bluetooth hookup. I also use a handsfree bluetooth connection when in my car and after parking and turning off the car setup my cell phone will not recognize the bluetooth cordless phone attempt and will not connect until the phone is turned off and back on. The same thing happens when entering the car until I have traveled a distance from home and restarted the car. This seems to be a quirk of the cell phone and has not been enough of a hassle to try to find a work-around. All in all I have been extremely please and would recommend this cordless phone to anyone who can make use of the bluetooth capabilities or wants to get rid of their landline while keeping a home phone.
Personal Experience With the Panasonic KX-TG Phone System
With our landline canceled I have several weeks of experience using the Panasonic cordless bluetooth phone system now, and have been pleased over all.
The bluetooth hookup failure after driving our car continues to happen intermittently, but also continues to be a small enough problem that I haven't tried to fix it. Just a minor quirk to me.
There is a pause between dialing on the cordless handset and the cell phone actually dialing a call when calling out. I suppose this is because the number information needs transferred from the handset to the Panasonic base to the cell phone. Again, not a big deal and something I can live with.
There is also a pause when answering an incoming call on the handset, probably for the same reason. I've learned to wait a second or so after pressing the answer button on the handset before I produce the inevitable "Hello?". Simply snatching up the phone and saying "Hello" produces only silence as the cell has not passed information to the cordless yet. This is more of an irritation, but again one I've learned to handle.
The talking caller ID doesn't work as well as hoped. While the phone number is spoken aloud, actual ID is seldom passed from the cell to the Panasonic set and caller names are unavailable. I believe this is a function of the cell phone, though, and the cheap cell simply doesn't support it. If the number is in the phone book on the cordless set it works, but otherwise only the phone number is reported. It still enables me to ignore both "unavailable" and "800" numbers; they never have anything I want to hear.
The "block caller" function certainly works well and is appreciated. The cordless set can accept up to about 20 numbers and will ring those numbers only once, until the caller id comes through. It then disconnects the call with no action from me.
Overall we have been very satisfied with the purchase of our Panasonic KX-TG cordless bluetooth phone system and would purchase another. It's a good deal, and a very handy gadget to have.
*Edit* Since writing this, both of our cell phones have been replaced with other models and the failure to hook up has disappeared. Hooking up as we enter the house is always automatic now and the cell never needs turned off and back on; that was obviously a failure of the cell and not the cordless system.
© 2010 Dan Harmon