Gigaset A540A digital telephone & answering machine review
As mobile technology advances at an ever-increasing pace, landline telephones are almost becoming forgotten as everyone becomes obsessed with Bluetooth, touchscreens and built-in video recording.
However, if, like me you still need a functional landline with and answering machine then the Gigaset A540A could be right up your street. The A540a combines a nicely contoured handset with a compact answering machine base station. Both are finished in a nice, solid-feeling textured plastic with buttons that have a good tactile feel, not that wobbly rubbery feel that some phones have. You can buy it as a single unit, or buy packs with more matching handsets to leave around the house which will easily link to the base station too.
Customisable appearance and ringtones
The handset has a good clear LCD screen which can be set to one of four different colours for your own personal preference. It displays the usual kind of information such as battery condition, signal strength and call duration. When it’s not in use it also handily shows the time and date.
In terms of usability, the A540A couldn’t be simpler. It has all the usual features of any landline phone and call quality is excellent. I found it to be better than my old BT phone and the caller on the other end of the line commented how my voice sounded better to them too. Battery life from the two supplied rechargeable AAA batteries is excellent. Range is very good too, Gigaset say it can be used up to 300 metres away from the base station , dependent on walls and such like, more than enough for anyone.
The answering machine can be accessed remotely using a PIN code or via the very clear buttons on the base station. You have a 25 minute recording time and you can record your own out-going message very easily.
Other cool features of this phone are the ability to assign different ring tones to different people who you store in the phone’s memory. You can even assign people as VIP’s and even change the colour of the display when they call. Pointless, but quite fun all the same!
One feature I particularly like is the ability to silence any unknown callers. You can tell the phone to not ring when a withheld number tries to call and instead go straight to voicemail. This is handy for people who don’t like to be disturbed by random marketing calls for example.
Summary and pricing
Overall this is a great, simple little phone with sophisticated features that does everything you could need a telephone answering machine to do. Minor quibbles would be that the cord for connecting to your phone socket is a tad short so you may need an extension if you can’t position the base station close to the socket. Other than that I can’t really fault it.
The RRP is £39.95, and even better it currently has £10 off at exclusive UK stockists John Lewis making it just £29.95 as part of their rather good current technology offers. There’s also £20 off the multi-handset version.