by January 1, 2000 0 comments

Telephone conversations will never be the same again, considering the host of advanced features in the two ISDN telephones we reviewed–the Eurit 20 and Eurit 40 from
Ascom. Both the phones are suitable for corporate use, as ISDN hasn’t yet become affordable for the masses. However, since both phones have certain features that work only if your exchange supports them, you should check out the facilities offered by your local telephone exchange before buying either of these. 

Eurit 20

Ascom Eurit 20 

ISDN telephone. Rs 9,750
Features: Three-party conferencing; malicious call registration; call parking; call rejection; call splitting.
Pros: All functions are accessible through the dialing keypad, so you don’t need to wade through menus.
Cons: You have to remember the key combinations for different functions. 

Source: Ascom India, 34 Udyog Vihar, Phase IV, Gurgaon, Haryana 122016. Tel: 124- 342083 Fax: 349114 
E-mail: ascom@del2.vsnl.net.in  

The Eurit 20 is a low-end model with LCD display. It shows you the date and time when the phone is idle, and the number you dial or the number of your calling party otherwise. When you make a call, it synchronizes the date and time from the telephone exchange and also times all calls. The telephone also remembers the last nine dialed numbers. 

The handset supports conferencing, in which three people can talk simultaneously. It supports call parking, where you can keep down the current handset and retrieve the call from another ISDN phone lying in another part of your office. However, these two features will work only if your exchange supports them. 

The Eurit 20 has a speakerphone for hands-free dialing, and you can adjust its volume control. All functions on the phone are triggered by a combination of the number keys on the keypad and a special key called the fox key. These functions are also printed on the keypad, but they’re in German. The accompanying manual, however, clearly explains everything in English. So, keep the manual in a safe place and memorize all the key combinations.

All functions are triggered by a combination of number keys and a special key called the fox keyThe handset also supports call rejection to keep unwanted callers out, and call splitting which lets you talk to two people in turn over the same phone without the other caller overhearing your conversation. The latter is common in most exchanges in metros nowadays. Two other important features (which also require exchange support) include call forwarding, and malicious call registration. The former allows you to transfer a call to any other telephone, while the latter registers (saves) the number from where the calls originated, which you could later forward to the exchange. It also has a hotline/baby call button which when activated, dials a pre-programmed number at the press of any key. This could be very useful when children need to call up their parents in case of an emergency. 

The phone also gives you a choice of four ringing melodies and supports one-touch dialing for 10 frequently-used telephone numbers.

Eurit 40

Ascom Eurit 40 

ISDN telephone. Rs 30,500
Features: Contact management; auto announcements; answering machine; one-touch dialing; built-in macros.
Pros: Easy to use. 
Cons: Expensive.

Source: Ascom India
34 Udyog Vihar
Phase IV, Gurgaon
Haryana 122016.
Tel: 124- 342083 Fax: 349114
E-mail: ascom@del2.vsnl.net.in  

This ISDN phone supports all features of the
Eurit 20 and more. It has a larger LCD display, and an alphanumeric keypad. Its menu system is divided into three sections to simplify access to all its features. It has an audio-visual alarm with text display that you can use to program reminders, and a card file system to help you manage your contacts. 

You can store 600 entries in this system, out of which 100 can be recorded so that their names are automatically announced when they call. The telephone can have multiple subscriber numbers (up to five), which you can label as private, business, club, etc. These can be recorded and announced automatically, so that you know the category of the incoming call before answering it. These subscriber numbers have to be assigned by the exchange. One of these could also be assigned to the in-built answering machine. 

The keys next to the LCD panel facilitate one-touch dialingYou can assign 16 numbers in the VIP category, which then become available for one-touch dialing. There’s a log key that gives you a list of the last 10 answered calls, and a caller list button that gives you a list of the last 30 unanswered calls. You can also forward your calls to another subscriber number or its built-in answering machine. 

The phone has a mute button to prevent the calling party from hearing you. The instrument can also emulate a regular telephone for accessing services like railway enquiries, etc, which require DTMF (dual tone multi-frequency) tones. 

The Eurit 40 can keep track of the number of calls you make and calculate billing information. However, it doesn’t support Indian currency. There’s a list of pre-written macros to speed up common tasks, such as activate/deactivate call forwarding, or suppressing your caller ID if you want to keep your identity anonymous for a particular call, etc. 

Heavy users can also connect headsets, or write their own macros to speed up work.
Overall, the Eurit 40 is useful, but expensive.

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