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Siemens is a famous engineering conglomerate that is based in Germany. As the Europe's largest engineering company it has a wide range of products that cover communication systems, automation, lighting, power generation, IT services and business services, etc. The one I’m writing about is one of Siemens digital phones, given the full name, Siemens Gigaset AL285.
Siemens Gigaset AL285 comes in an orange cardboard box. There are a big picture of the phone and 5 smaller labelled pictures written in 11 languages on the front side of the box. The labelled pictures list some of the main features: Handsfree, 80 contacts, 25 hours talktime, etc.
There are one handset, one base station, one mains adapter, one phone cord, two batteries, one battery cover and one user guide inside.
The handset at a glance:
The handset of Siemens Gigaset AL285 has a Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) that can display the charge status of the batteries, answer machine icon, date and time, INT(call other registered handsets) and MENU(open main/submenu).
Two display keys are under the LCD. Followed the display keys are one message key, one handsfree key, one control key, one talk key and one end call key (on/off key). When press down on the control key it can be used as a directory key. Under those functional keys it is a standard dial keypad. At the bottom of the handset there are one recall key, one microphone and one microphone on/off key.
The base station at a glance:
The base station has eight keys: one registration/paging key, one on/off key, two volume keys, one play/stop key, one delete current message key, one skip to the previous message key and one skip to next message key.
In detail the main features of this phone are listed below: The handset offers 25 hours talktime on a full charge and/or 250 hours standby time; The answering machine offers 12 minutes recording time; There is a built-in speakerphone to allow hands free use; You can use the headset up to 300 metres outdoor range in ideal conditions; You can save 80 phone numbers in the storage; You can redial the last received number using the recall button; You can control ringer volume and handset volume using the control buttons; You have 10 different ringer melodies to personalise your handset; You can listen to stored message while message received indicator flashing light tells that you have a message or missed call; You have outgoing call list and incoming call list (25 numbers); Low battery indicator lights up when battery is low; You can transfer calls between numerous handsets on the same line; It has remote access facility that enables you listen to messages to the headset when you are not at home;
Setting up the phone is simple. The instruction book is well written and easy to follow. First you need to fit the batteries into the headset. Then you have to charge the headset for about 12 hours when it is out of the box for first time. Once the battery is fully charged you can register the handset to the base and personalise all the options as you like.
Price and Availability:
In the UK you can buy Siemens Gigaset AL285 from many outlets including Sainsbury’s, Comet, Argos, Amazon just to name a few. You will find prices vary considerably. As a guide the current price on Comet is £29.99.
I have owned Siemens Gigaset AL285 for a while now, and I would like to say this set is a very good phone. It is a digital phone that has better clarity than analogue versions. I’ve used the phone everywhere in my home and I’ve had no problem making any call.
The headset is quite comfortable to hold in my hand as it is similar in size to a mobile. The black colour looks smart and matches easily with most decor. The LCD display is fairly clear and big enough to read. The keys are very intuitive to use and the menus are straightforward to navigate. Last but not least the handset engages properly on the base station and makes a tone when you replace it after using.
However I do have a minor criticism concerning the selection of ring tones. I have tried all 10 that are available and can’t find one that satisfies me completely. In conclusion, I am more than happy to recommend Siemens Gigaset AL285 to anyone who wants to buy a reasonably priced digital phone.