Poly Elara 60 Series Review – A Microsoft Teams Mobile Phone Station
Mobile usage continues to grow at an exponential rate, as users consume more media and content on their mobile phones. In fact, according to Frost & Sullivan, 500 million business workers use their smart phones at and for work every day. As a result, organizations are looking for new ways to utilize smart phones in a business environment and make the full use of their collaboration potential. This leads us to Poly and the new Elara 60 series, which is designed to turn your smartphone into a desktop collaboration tool. This mobile phone station is one of the first products released under Poly brand.
Figure 1 Poly Elara 60 Series Mobile Phone Station. Use Microsoft Teams button to launch Microsoft Teams on mobile phone
Packaging & Installation
Looking at the packaging, it’s clear Poly wants to ensure the mobile phone station arrives in pristine condition – the packaging looks like it would survive a 30,000-foot drop test. The device itself looks great, with a black design and lava red highlights.
Installation is also easy. Simply plug it into a power outlet and pair with your mobile device. From there, the user interface is intuitive and easy to use, with an adjustable viewing plate that supports both portrait and landscape modes. While connected, devices can charge through multi-coil wireless or wired charging. It can wirelessly charge phones from portrait or landscape mode, but to use the wireless charger in portrait mode, the device must be placed on the adjustable viewing plate and slid all the way to the left.
Figure 2 Microsoft Teams Logo
Connecting the Mobile Phone Station
I already had Microsoft’s Mobile Teams app on my phone, so the Elara 60 automatically connected to it. This provided easy access to all the Teams features, although it was limited in some cases due to the size of my mobile phone’s screen. I was still able to easily follow a shared presentation, so it’s not a major issue. Making calls and chatting in teams was just like using my PC.
The device came with a VOYAGER FOCUS UC Stereo Bluetooth headset with Active Noise Canceling (ANC). This provided great audio quality, along with very good bass response. When I listened to streaming music, it automatically stopped when I took the headset off and started again when I put it back on. The ANC helped my voice get through the call clearly, even when there was a chainsaw cutting down a tree nearby. I also paired it with my Voyager 5200 UC without difficulty.
The built-in speaker is what you would expect from the leader in conference room phones. The default volume was a little low, but easy to adjust to my preferred level.
I found that the device works equally well with Android or iOS smartphones. You can dial right from the Elara keypad, so all your phone has to do is connect. The Poly Elara 60 series also provides insight into your device usage, along with inventory tracking and firmware updates.
You can customize settings and update firmware from the Poly Elara 60 Series app. It also works with the Plantronics Manager Pro software-as-a-service, although that is offered separately. Plantronics Manager Pro is an analytics and change management solution that helps IT manage and drive the communication experience from a central location. The Poly Elara 60 Series is easy to deploy; no provisioning or wiring required.
Overall, the Poly Elara 60 series succeeds at turning any individual smartphone into a Microsoft Teams collaboration experience. It enables all the convenience and functionality of a desk phone, while still allowing users to work from the mobile phones they know and trust.