The stylish Jawbone made by Aliph, a noise reduction headset for mobile phones, relies on the kind of technology pilots use to help them hear over plane engine noise (at much higher cost). This ergonomically designed headset with a cheek sensor employs electronics that actively listen to the background noise and reduce it by subtracting it out of the microphone signals, adjusting to ambient noise at a rate of 500 times per second. The Jawbone model we tested made it easier to hear and to be heard in noisy environments than would be possible with traditional microphones, headsets and speakers. One of the reasons this was possible is that the Jawbone we tried had two microphones (most headsets have one), including a jaw sensor for speech vibrations.
Traveling through Botswana , South Africa and Zambia for five weeks of game viewing adventures, we were thankful to have Iridium connectivity and a Motorola 9500 Satellite phone. It worked almost everywhere we tried it as long as it had clear access to the sky to receive the satellite signal. In remote camps without phones or Internet service, it was the only way to stay in touch with work, family and friends. One of our group members, who had a relative undergoing medical treatment in the U.S. , was particularly thankful for the ability to stay in touch the Iridium Motorola phone provided.
Good voice and data connectivity in the U.S. Talking and standby time battery seemed consistent with advertised values. The compact size of the phone and its accessories made it easy to travel with. The phone performed in every country and remote area where we tested it, including Germany, South Africa, Botswana and Zambia. Connection quality was good for the majority of the calls. Only one call to the U.S. from South Africa was garbled. We were able to make calls from urban and rural areas; even inside the Kruger National Park in South Africa and while crossing the border from Zambia and Botswana .
In spite of wicked winds (gale force at times), overcast days, sand, rain, rivers, limited hours of access, moving satellites and remote locations in the African bush, we managed to stay in touch with