Poor Engineering

We just got a new phone system here at work and while the system itself is great, I am less than impressed by the engineering of the headset. Check out this photo:

That is a position I find myself in a lot of times, while I am rifling through a technical manual, or a PO file, or whatever. The receiver is so off balance that when I put it like this, the microphone is covered up by my chin. Also, the earpiece comes off of my ear a bit.
Look how tiny! I do have big hands, but this is a bit ridiculous.
So replace it…well…
…note the round cutout for the receiver. Stuck. I have a hands free that I will be making great friends with for the forseeable future.
What I get to thinking in these situations is if the phone manufacturer actually consulted an ergonomics engineer at all, and if they did, that guy or girl must have been last in the class.
Maybe, just maybe, this phone was designed in China, by Chinese people, who are typically smaller than us behemoths here in the States.
Just thoughts that pass through my head when faced with this type of crappy engineering.

Cross posted at LITGM.

4 thoughts on “Poor Engineering”

  1. It’s possible that the phone was designed for the Asian market in the first place. When I was at Apple we asked the engineers why we were thinking about releasing a very small lightweight laptop in Japan but not in America. The answer: The keyboard was to small for most adult American men to touch type. Turns out, Asians end up with a lot of smaller electronics, like cell phones, in part because the average size of the population is significantly smaller than in the West.

    Most likely, the phones are made by a generics company based in Asia. They make the same basic phone for many different brands but largely for the Asian market. Then somebody in America sees a bunch of cheap phones for sale and buys a big batch while figuring a-phone-is-a-phone.

    I sympathize with your plight. Few things are worse than being stuck having to constantly use a poorly designed tool.

  2. Hey, hey, hey…

    That’s a HANDSET not a headset.

    Try http://www.plantronics.com for some great office headset systems that will fix you right up!

    I use them myself for both my mobile and my office phone. Yes, I do work for Plantronics too!

  3. At my job, we have VOIP phones that are pretty crappy overall, especially the handset, which doesn’t reliably engage the dial tone or answer a call when you pick it up. My advice to you is to make good use of the speaker phone option. Hands free for free!

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