At liGo, we understand how confusing the world of headsets can be. With such a host of options, it’s often hard to figure out which one will genuinely optimise your business and employee performance.
The two main wireless connections on the market are Bluetooth and DECT. With the meteoric surge in Bluetooth headphones used with mobiles and computers, we seem to have a vague grip on what they can do. But what about the latter? How is DECT any different, and does it have any benefits over Bluetooth? Read on to find out the differences and what they can offer you!
What is Bluetooth and DECT?
Initially developed in 1994, Bluetooth has been a technology which we have become familiar with particularly in the last 10-15 years, coinciding with the rise of smartphones. Most of us now use Bluetooth to connect our mobiles to a music speaker at home or wireless headphones when you’re out and about. Simply put, Bluetooth uses short range radio frequency to share data/connection between 2 or more devices.
DECT or Digital Enhanced Cordless Technology to give it it’s proper title, was first published in 1992. Initially designed to provide a simple and reliable cordless phone option. The signalling is what traditionally allows cordless landline phones to communicate with each other wirelessly. Every DECT system requires at least one main base and at least one wireless device which receives the signal. With headsets this means the base unit will connect via cable to your device (e.g. computer), and the headset can then be used wirelessly, receiving signal from the base unit.
Plantronics CS540 DECT Headset
With most businesses moving to a web based soft phone system, security is an ever more important factor when dealing with sensitive data and customer details. Reports suggest cybercrime related attacks have increased by up to 600% in the last few years, making it clear to many businesses that security is an issue to be taken seriously.
In comparing the two technologies, DECT headsets can offer significantly higher security in comparison with Bluetooth. DECT uses a three-step security process including verifying security bindings between the headset and the base unit as well as ensuring the voice data itself is encrypted, making it unusable by a potential intercepting party.
Bluetooth offers a similar initial validation when pairing, and due to the signal range being smaller (which we go into more later on), it reduces the chance of outside interception. Along with the constantly shifting operating frequency which adds an extra layer of security. However, when compared together, the DECT system definitely comes out on top.
As we know, Bluetooth is the standard we have come to accept when connecting to our various electronic devices day to day. Whether it be headphones, laptops or desktops. Most, if not all devices created now have Bluetooth compatibility built in to allow a seamless connection from device straight to the headset. This is incredibly easy to do and happens in a matter of seconds, only requiring the two devices. Another added bonus is that you can have up to 8 devices registered to your headset, and two connected at the same time. Especially convenient if you are using your mobile as well as your laptop during your working day, you can seamlessly switch without any effort of adjusting the headsets settings.
DECT on the other hand requires a little more to pair. As the technology isn’t anywhere near as readily available on devices such as laptops etc. This results in the DECT setup requiring the headset as well its base station, which acts as the beacon for the signal. So in theory the connection goes from the headset to the base unit, and then from base unit to the computer. Rather than with Bluetooth, which uses the device such as phone or laptop as it’s beacon already. This means that DECT headsets can connect to laptops and to landline phones, as they offer a connection port for the base station, however they are not able to pair with mobiles. Finally, unlike Bluetooth which can have up to 8 devices, the DECT headset can only connect to one at a time so you cannot easily switch to another device. This more limited compatibility definitely gives Bluetooth the edge for users pairing a headset with a laptop as well as their mobile, for calls or even listening to music!
Jabra Evolve Series Bluetooth Headset
Range and Call Quality
Finally, an important factor depending on the layout and business model, is range. Although the DECT setup uses a separate base station meaning it is less versatile, this in turn offers a far greater range in comparison to a Bluetooth model. You can go up to 55 metres from the base station and still hold a call as if you were 1 metre away. Alternatively with a Bluetooth model, you are much more limited with only a 10-metre range. Of course, this isn’t always as important a factor, as most Bluetooth headsets used in an office environment wont need to ever go more than a few metres from their desk.
When it comes to call quality, both connection types offer an extremely high standard. However, in a larger office where there are a greater number of employees in the same room, DECT would be our recommendation. You may have experienced it before with Bluetooth headphones, if you are in an area with a lot of Bluetooth devices, it can occasionally cause some interference. However, the DECT signalling allows for a more stable call quality without any interruption, when you have more users in the same room. This can lend itself to businesses such as contact centres, where not only do you have a large employee base in the same room, but also the importance of call quality is crucial to the business.
As you have probably gathered, both connection types will work well in a typical office. However, when weighing up the pros and cons we would recommend the DECT headsets towards contact centre type environments, dealing with sensitive customer details. This is due to its increased security system and the ability to retain call quality and connection in a densely packed office. Bluetooth however is still the most popular headset type and is well suited for a more typical office environment, hybrid and working from home. As the overall versatility to switch between different devices as well as the greater choice of Bluetooth headsets on the market makes this the perfect choice. For more information on what we offer, check out our business headset range here!