Some of you might know Callpod as the company that makes charging adapters and power hubs for portable electronics, but it also dabbles in Bluetooth accessories. In fact, the Callpod Dragon was one of the first Bluetooth headsets with an extended range of more than 100 meters, plus we hadn't seen one with such a unique circular design. Now it has come out with yet another headset: the Callpod Vetro. It carries on the Callpod heritage of unusual eye-catching design, plus it offers walkie-talkie functionality. Unfortunately we experienced a few issues with the fit and audio quality of the headset. The Callpod Vetro is $99.95 retail.
The Callpod Vetro has a sharp rectangular design and appears to be built out of materials found in an office building. On the front is a piece of plastic that looks like frosted glass. It's held onto the headset with four screws, one on each corner. At 2.2 inches long by 0.65 inch wide by 0.6 inch thick, the overall feel of the headset is quite blocky and bulky, but with an odd modern edge. The Callpod branding is located at the top, between two of the screws. Underneath the frosted surface is an LED indicator that flashes red and blue.
On top of the headset is a volume rocker that can be pressed to act as the power button. The placement of the rocker is less than ideal because it bumps up against the top part of the ear, and wiggling your finger there just to change the volume feels a tad awkward. On the right side of the headset is the multifunction call button, which we actually thought was a small piece of cut-out plastic. It is rather difficult to press with certainty because it's so small and stiff. The Micro-USB charging port is on the left side.
On the back of the headset is a round rubbery "GummyGel" earbud that is a bit too big for our small ears. It does come with an alternate earbud cover, but even that felt a little uncomfortable when worn. It also comes with an optional ear hook for stability, which we recommend.
Features of the Vetro include the usual answering, ending, and rejecting calls, plus voice command support. It also has two-way walkie-talkie functionality when paired with another Callpod Bluetooth headset, and with a range of 50 meters, it has up to five times the operating range of a standard Bluetooth headset.
We paired the Callpod Vetro with the Apple iPhone 3G and the Kyocera Neo. Call quality was average and not as good as we had hoped. We heard our callers loud and clear, though we detected quite a bit of static and fuzz at times. On their end, callers said that we sounded rather choppy and intermittent, with our voice dropping in and out, especially when we spoke softly. When we did come through, they said our voice quality was a bit on the harsh side; they didn't hear much background sound, though, even when we were outside.
The Callpod Vetro has a rated battery life of up to 8 hours talk time and up to 12.5 days standby time.