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Organizing conference calls usually means gathering up individuals and
placing them in a conference room with expensive conferencing equipment.

Sounds pretty simple, right?

The cold hard reality is that task is turning out to be anything but simple.
Today’s businesses are always on the go, with workers out in the field, small
satellite offices and more chores being performed at customers sites, and that
can make something as simple as a conference call a challenge.

IP telephony pioneer IPEVO solves that problem with its TR-10 Portable
Conference Phone, which can be thought of as an instant conferencing telephony
solution. Some may make the mistake of confusing the TR-10 with a speaker
phone. Trust us, it much more than that.

The TR-IO is designed with versatility in mind. The device offers excellent
speaker phone sound quality, and it proves to be a cost-effective Skype
conference phone solution. Users can readily switch between handset and
hands-free mode with the touch of a single button. The device has a very small
footprint, which makes it ideal for travelers.

The TR-10 is designed to be connected to a PC’s USB
port and is used with VOIP services from Skype. The unit incorporates 16-bit DSP
(digital signal processing) technology to improve call quality and features
auto gain control along with noise canceling. It also features a 2-watt speaker
and an internal omnidirectional microphone, which works very well, even in
noisy environments.

The TR-10 is fully integrated with the Skype service. Users will find
dedicated buttons on the device to launch Skype from a connected PC or Mac. The
unit works with Windows XP, Windows Vista and Mac operating systems. Of course,
users will need to have Skype installed on their PCs and have an active
account. The good news, at least for Skype-to-Skype calls, is that Skype is
completely free and supports conferencing calls directly from the Skype
interface. For a few dollars a year, Skype can be used to call landlines and
receive calls from external users. Most users will want a full-fledged Skype
account before using the TR10.

If privacy is needed, the unit can also be used as a traditional handset. Plus,
the unit features a mute button and easy-to-use volume controls.

A nifty feature of the TR-10 is its ability to work as a voice/call
recorder. Users can “tape” meetings or conference calls for future reference,
and the quality of the recording proves to be far superior to the integrated
microphone found on most notebook computers.

Call recording is handled by included software, FreeRec, which is
automatically installed along with the product’s driver.

During a call, all a user has to do is press the red circle recording button
on the phone to save the conversation. FreeRec automatically adjusts the
microphone volume level. Recording time is only limited by the host machine’s
available memory. Installation of the unit is plug-and-play simple, which make
the device a good candidate to be shared across multiple PCs.

Solution providers selling notebook computers or supporting Skype should
seriously consider offering the TR-10. At just $79.95, the unit could be
bundled with every notebook computer sold or at the very least be offered as an
option for small businesses looking to conduct conference calls without
investing in high-end, dedicated conference room equipment.