Product Type: British Telecom telephones
Newest Review: ... on it's neat charging stand on the hall table plugged into the mains and also into the phone line socket and provides an essential link... more
The basic home phone
BT Freestyle 710
Member Name: pmcds
BT Freestyle 710
Advantages: Basic, call quality, messages
Disadvantages: Doesn't do much else
The main thing I like about it is that all functions come from the actual phone itself. I don't like the idea of having to go to the base unit every time you want to use a function, especially if you have the mobile part of it in a completely different part of the house. The numbers and sparse buttons on the device of this make it look slightly like the old Nokia brick that the vast majority of people used to have when mobiles were still relatively new to the wider population.
This clear deliberate design works very well, and it makes the phone very usable from this point of view. It's a good size to hold. The buttons on the front are well protruded from the shell, enough so that it's clear when you press them. They also make a beep noise once you've pressed them, so you know for sure. It also appears on the display, a basic calculator style display that is small but does the basics of what it needs to. The other buttons on there are a green one for initiating the call and a red one for cancelling it. There are also a couple of function buttons for the answerphone, for example, and this is well used by the handset with the numbers also doubling up as play, forward, back buttons etc. Just be sure to press the message buttons first.
Ultimately, the call quality is very clear on these. We've never had any issues with being able to hear anyone, nor have they experienced negative call quality due to our end of the line. It makes this a very basic but ultimately rewarding and simple phone. Nowadays you can get house phones that do an awful lot more, and if you were buying for the first time I'd recommend taking advantage of some of these particular designs to enhance your networking and communications at home, but for those who are after something specifically simple then I can recommend this. Don't judge things solely on how good they are for what they are when making a purchasing decision, make sure to actually read up on the product and work out what you need. This has call waiting options, and you can input a limited number of names on a phonebook style list, but it's still very basic.
For example, this would be perfect for my grandmother who just needs an easy to use phone and couldn't care less about an all singing and all dancing home phone, whereas my friends who have just moved in to a new house and are searching for a phone wouldn't appreciate this in the slightest as it wouldn't do half the things their old house phone did. We're upgrading very soon, looking to buy something that helps link other things around the house, but for the moment we're happy with this. The battery unit on the handsets is started to fade, but then the phones are a good few years old. The base unit still works perfectly and the amount of times things have been dropped, it's certainly sturdy as well.
So, worth a purchase if you're definitely after something specifically simple, but stay clear if you want to keep up with the times. This will make and receive calls and keep messages for you, but doesn't really do a whole lot else.
Summary: Very basic home phone and message unit
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