The parrot CK5000 is a product already made by parrot for use by OEM partners.
It is a standalone circuit board that is capable of communicating with a very wide variety of bluetooth
phones on its own. In fact, it supports more bluetooth phone profiles then any other product. The CK5000 is capable of connecting to and maintaining a bluetooth connection completely on its own. It takes the headaches out of communicating with a bluetooth phone and is as good as it gets with respect to ease of use and capability from a handsfree phone device. It has *speaker* and *microphone* connections on it as well as a data communication protocol for controlling it and in turn the phone. These connections are circuit board traces, they can not be hooked up to anything on a computer directly.
On its own, it is not made to be hooked up to a computer. It is NOT a product meant to be sold directly to consumers and it is definitly NOT a usb device, but rather it is a raw component. OEMs and systems vendors buy this for integration and prototyping. It is already used by alot of embedded devices to add bluetooth phone functionality without having to deal with supporting the completely non-standardized phone profiles from different phone vendors.
A number of months ago we (mp3car
/StreetDeck) began talking to parrot to develop a bluetooth phone solution for StreetDeck, since then we have developed a working prototype and are in the process of making a USB device that integrates the CK5000 and will work with StreetDeck to control it. It was initially an uphill battle to convince them of the value of carputers, but we had some very strong supporters in the company and they are now on board and are giving us very good support in getting our hardware
made, mp3car is making the device using parrot technology and will be selling the USB based device for carputer use that integrates the CK5000. Parrot is not and probably will not be making a device that can be hooked up directly to your computer, but they are supporting us to help us make one that can. You should not contact parrot asking how to hook to the CK5000 up to your computer, its not meant for that, its meant to be used in a device that can be embedded in something a consumer can use. If you want to use the CK5000 with your carputer, you will have to wait until our device appears on the store ready for use with a computer.
With enough work, yes the same functionality can be accomplished without the CK5000 using a standard USB bluetooth dongle, some software
, and a compatible phone. In my experience, you have to have an inordinate amount of skill and luck on your side to do this reliably, even by carputer user standards. The device based on the CK5000, like all StreetDeck products, won't necessarily do anything new that somebody somewhere hasn't managed to do with thier carputer somehow. What it does, is let an ordinary person do it quickly, reliably, and usably. This device and StreetDeck will make hooking up a bluetooth phone for handsfree calling to your carputer as simple as plugging in a usb device, starting streetdeck, then selecting pair on your phone. You won't have to worry about if your phone is compatible, if it has bluetooth it probably is. You won't have to worry about buggy PC bluetooth drivers crashing since all the bluetooth takes place in the CK5000. Once you pair your phone, your phonebook is automatically downloaded and your are ready to start making calls immediatly.