Review: Motorola MOTOROKR T505 Bluetooth In-Car Speakerphone

Can't find a Bluetooth Headset that fits your ear? Struggling enough with the headset that it defeats the purpose of being 'hands free'? Well, the Motorola MOTOROKR T505 Bluetooth In-Car Speakerphone ($99.95) is ideal for you. It is essentially a Bluetooth speakerphone, keeping your hands free and your ears clear while driving your car. Unlike a Bluetooth headset, the Motorokr T505 is meant to be used strictly in a car setting. How does it perform?

Read on for the rest of the review!

Design

The Motorokr T505 looks about the size of your average garage door opener, in fact, Motorola suggests that you clip it to the sun visor in your car. The build quality of the Motorokr T505 is superb. It has great texture to it, feeling soft yet sturdy. The buttons are defined and easy-to-reach, the overall look of the Motorokr T505 is subtly stylish, a gadget that looks more wonderous and mysterious than utilitarian and boxy. It will more often than not blend into your car instead of sticking out like an eye-sore.

 

Usability

The Motorokr T505 sets out to do a few things which are: keep your hands free while driving, provide a clearer and louder speakerphone than your iPhone’s, and transmit calls (and music) to your car’s stereo system via FM. It certainly can be considered a narrow scope to focus on, if you don’t drive a car you won’t need the Motorokr T505. But if you do drive a car, let me tell you this, I can’t imagine using anything other than the Motorokr T505 again.

Syncing your iPhone with the Motorokr T505 is easy as any other Bluetooth device. And I was able to use the speakerphone in seconds upon powering up. Also, charging is made available through mini-USB. What’s great about the Motorokr T505 is that there is no fumbling for the iPhone or having an earpiece attached to you the entire time you’re driving, it is truly a hands free device.

The speakerphone is clear, loud, and extremely audible. Callers were pronounced and unmistakably clear, this was as good as it gets for a Bluetooth speakerphone. Callers also agreed that I sounded great and hardly noticed that I was talking via speakerphone, they assumed I was on my iPhone the entire time.

When the FM transmitter in the Motorokr T505 transmits the call to your FM, it scans the best available station to broadcast to. Specifically, it searches for an empty signal and broadcasts your call to that transmission. Doing this, it gives your phone call a surround sound-esque platform. Though your mileage may vary with the FM transmitter, I live in Los Angeles, home of a multitude of FM stations and the Motorokr T505 still managed to find a signal that was empty and transmitted the conversation clearly to my car’s stereo.

However, because the Motorokr T505 is a speakerphone meant for in the car use, it can only fill a specific niche. For example, if you are always on the go but without a car, there is little need for a car speakerphone. But if you are a commuter who travels mainly by car, there are few better options. The only downside to the Motorokr T505 is when you are carrying passengers, your conversation is not exactly private since the whole car can hear and participate. For those worried about those situations, a Bluetooth headset might better fit that need.

 

Final Thoughts

I never imagined a car speakerphone to perform so well. I initially imagined the Motorokr T505 to be nothing more than a glorified speakerphone for the iPhone, but I was completely off base. It is a speakerphone that offers great compatibility, clarity, and flexibility. As a speakerphone it succeeds, but when transmitting to your FM stereo it surpasses all expectations.

This Motorokr T505 is a great solution for anyone who is looking for a hands-free device while driving in the car. I highly recommend it to all people who are in need of talking on their cell phone while driving.

PROS

  • Great Sounding Speakerphone
  • Transmits to FM stations well
  • Stylish Design
  • Easy-To-Use

CONS

  • For Use in Car Only
  • Conversations aren't exactly private

Final Rating: 4.8/5

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Reader comments

Review: Motorola MOTOROKR T505 Bluetooth In-Car Speakerphone

43 Comments

I have been looking for a car kit since a while ago. Parrot offers great quality models, though they all tend to claim protagonism in your car’s dash. I like the fact that this Motorokr doesn’t do that and instead it’s been designed for being clipped in the visor. But I am very skeptic about the FM transmission working well. I have tried several FM transmitters in the past, including some very expensive ones, and I have returned them all. I live in a city with radio stations in every step of the dial and I find it hard to believe that this device can find a clear enough spot to work on.
I will follow on this one to find if any readers have tried it already and recommend it.

"CONS
1) For Use in Car Only
2) Conversations aren’t exactly private"
I'm never going to buy this, but - I am sorry - this doesn't make any sense.
1) it meant to be used in the car only
and
2) All the "in-car Bluetooth solutions" are NOT PRIVATE unless you swap the call to the handset or headset

I have a question:
If you are listening to specific station in your car, how does it switch to that FM station you talk about? I understand that it is meant as an FM transmitter for music but for someone listening to a CD while driving and the phone rings how exactly will it handle it?

I ran out and bought one at best buy, going to return this sucker, it does not allow you to stream Ipod to the FM, the main reason I bought this solution.
It does look like a great solution for motorola phones built to use this, and I like the solution.
Speaker phone was as he said, very good, but not usefull to me if i can not stream the Ipod on my iphone.
I have a belkin iphone holder/charger that had a broadcast, but not a speaker phone solution.
I will keep looking, or re-evaluate my device (the iphone).
EJ

Moose:
NO, it does not change to that radio, it is not your radio that the speaker device controlls.
It is kind of strange, but there is a button on the back that seeks out a clean channel and finds one, and tells you the freq, you must change to that channel.
I figure if I am in the same town or area, the same channels will be found or used.
I was using mine for 2 hours on a small trip, before I decided to return it.
However the charger is cool, you can use it when being charged.

Let me start out by saying WOW!!! This little bluethooth is without a doubt a heaven sent. It sounds super. Super easy to hook up.I am so glad I bought it.Who would have ever thought Motorola and Apple? What a sweet sound to my ears.

I have had this gadget since it came out a few months ago and I cannot live without it. Excellent sound quality and very easy to pair. The Fm trasnmitter works fine.
Do not blame on Motorola that it does not work with iphone, blame it to apple. Everything they make, they make it incompatible with everything, so they sell yo the overpriced accessories.

I purchased this recently to pair with my iPhone and it was quite easy to setup. I like the FM transmitter so I use it other than the built in speaker during phone conversation. What sucks is that it doesn't come with an AC adapter for in-house battery charging. However I did find the Cellet Travel/Home Charger, Model: TCMOTV3X
for in-house battery charging. I like this product.

I just purchased the T505 2 days ago . I returned it for a replacement because the voice prompt to make a call when asks you back to verify the name your requesting is inaudable and cut short. Its not my phone because when using the voice prompt strictly with my phone I can understand it crystal clear. Unfortunatly the replacement is more of the same. Other than that the FM modulator works wonderfully for phone calls and exceptional for playing tunes from my MP3 player.

I just bought one. I have tried to use a bluetooth head piece in the car, but if you don't have the thing in your ear at the time of the call, good luck trying to find it and put it in your ear while driving 65 mile per hour. It can be done, but it's not pretty. I will use this for the car, and an ear piece outside of the car and for privacy.

I have this device. LOVE IT!! However I misplaced the instructions and accidentally pushed a wrong button and now is is giving commands in French. Can you help by giving me details on how to get it back to English. Thanks for your help

while driving and a call is coming in does it automatically answer or do you have an option not to answer the call.

Does the speaker have to transmit thru FM? I am concerned if I will be able to use this if I go overseas and don't have FM?

Bought it from Best Buy, had it for two hours and returned it. It would not "voice command" dial any numbers that were in my iPhone (1st Gen)phone book, no matter what I did. Motorola tech support REALLY sucks. I decided to go with the Blueant Supertooth 3. Reviews are really good and it is designed to work with all generations of iPhone. it uses voice commands to answer, ignore or hangup a call but does not do FM like the T505 (I had no sue for that in my car) and is somewhat larger than the Motorola. It's somehwhat more expensive than the T505 but I found one at MSG Digital for $75.99. I should have it by the middle of this week. You should check it out.

Couple of points to clarify from prior posts...
1.) iPhone OS 3.0 released on June 17th supports A2DP, so you you can stream music from your phone to the device through your stereo speakers
2.) iPhone does not support voice dial until 3GS is release June 19th - so don't even attempt with first two generations of the device

I have used the T505 for over a year and love it. The volume is sufficient, the speaker is good and clear, it pairs up nicely with my Blackbetty and voice commands work fine. I like that it will connect through my FM radio on an unused station around 88 to 91 mhz. The people I call don't always know I am in my car on a speakerphone. My wife has the 305 and this is much better. I am about to give my 505 to her and buy a new one for myself.

Device works great. Only complaint is that with my iPhone 3gs i am unable to advance/skip to new tracks/music selections.. have to do it thru iPhone vs a button on device. They say I should be able to, buy hitting the +/- buttons.. but does not work for me.

I've had this now for 2 weeks and I'm sending it back! It's bl**dy dangerous! Trying to control music, telephone and radio from above your head just isn't on. I have an iphone and receiving calls through it means answering the phone, changing channels and messing with the volume. At 70mph on the motorway, it just shouldn't be allowed!

I was looking for a "better" hands-free device for my Blackberry. I was told by a Verizon sales agent that this would not stream music from my Blackberry, but I bought it anyway. He was wrong, it works great! I am very happy with this unit, it was easy to set up and easy to use. I can listen to music, (loud), and not have to woory about missing a call. 5 out of 5 stars!

Im in little ol New Zealand and bought one of these to go with my iPhone. Like Ralph it works fine for me other than it doesn't skip songs like i would like but sound quality for both phone calls and music is awesome. Would also like to be able to program in a station but once you get one it seems to work fine. it is supposed to remember the last station it used but mine doesn't seem to do that. All in all im very happy with it.

If you have an iphone, any model, you will not be able to get this, or any other bluetooth device, to skip songs.
This is because even though OS3.0 has A2DP (Advanced Audio Distribution Profile) support, it doesn't have full AVRCP (Audio Visual Remote Control Profile) support.
see http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3647
Your options are:
* get a wired connector (such as a cradle)
* get this or another bluetooth fm transmitter and put up with whatever song is playing, until apple decide that they want to support the full profile
* or, do one of the above, and ask apple to add full support to upcoming OS releases. (http://www.apple.com/feedback/)

Can you listen to A.M. or must you always be on F.M. have it work. Do you change from the station you are listening to if on A.M. to F.M?

I'm now on my 3rd T505, and am getting bit again by an ongoing issue. The T505 worked great for the first year I had it - use it with a BB Pearl-Flip 8220. Sometimes I turn on the T505, go to dial a call, and I get the "Say A Command" prompt spoken very quickly, and it doesn't interpret anything I say. I can disconnect and reconnect but the issue remains. Only fix is to reboot the BB, which frustratingly takes a few minutes. Motorola has now swapped the T505 twice, and it's happening again on #3. Tried with another BB, and got the same issue, so I'm sure it's the T505. Now looking at the BB VM-605 - hopefully being OEM I won't get the same issue. Shame, as the T505 fit the bill for the first year :-(

Has anyone try this T505 with Windows Phone 7? I was wondering if it works well for downloading caller ID. I tried the T325 with my Windows Phone and can not get the caller ID's download to work so I'm looking for other device. Anyone, please share with me if you know this T505 works with Windows Phone7. Thanks.

If you're listening to a CD, then you are not on the correct input. In order to stream the audio to your stereo, you must be tuned to the station selected. If you want to listen to CD, you'll have to switch the input from CD to Radio and tune to the selected FM station, or just don't use the FM Transmitter when you want to listen to CDs, in that case the audio will be sent to the T505's built in speaker instead of your car stereo.

I have an original iphone with OS Version 3.1.3 installed. Can I get the ipod on my iphone to work on this thing, the T505? Thanks.

Tipb, I have been researching this device and came across the new model. It works great. Streams music, calls, and very user friendly. It has a speaker so you don't even have to use it in a car. the fm modulator works easily and there is little to no background static. It will work with any Bluetooth transmitter. there's an app for droid that will speak text, but it will not work on iPhone. Great buy.

I have this unit and it works great. It also allows me to stream music from my iPod Touch (3rd gen) to my stereo while synched with my Blackberry. Great feature.
One question, does anyone know if you can access the iPod Touch's Voice Control using this, or any other Bluetooth Speakerphone? I'd like to get handsfree usage of my iPod while driving since new laws in my area prevent the use of all handheld devices while driving. I can use the + and - buttons on the T505 to advance the track, but it would be great if I could tell it to "Play Artist" etc. while driving. Thus far, I've been unable to figure out if this is possible or not.
Thanks!

I lost my instructions, was then able to download them, however ... I cannot find how to set up the voice activated feature! Can anyone give me the instruction on how to do this? I would really appreciate it! Thanks

i use this with my iphone 3gs works great in my car also i use it when im on my bike insted of headphones it actualy pretty loud and rather that than have headphones on so it does not only work in youre car and it does work with an iphone 3gs and the voice controls work well with the 3gs

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