Yealink W41P: The DECT Desk Phone
Yealink W41P brings about the best of both worlds: The corded, highly reliable T41S in combination with the cordless convenience of the W60B base station.
The W41P pack is excellent for users wishing to retain the feature set and experience provided by desk phones, while also utilizing the connection advantages of the DECT system.
In order to provide potential users with everything they might need to know about the pack, we will break down the W41P’s components in detail.
The W41P bundle consists of the W60B base station, the T41S handset, and the DD10K pairing dongle.
One of the essential ideas behind the W41P pack is to eliminate the need for additional network cables in the workspace. Usually, desk phones such as the T41S are powered via an AC adapter and wired via the local router’s network cable.
The exception comes with switch routers supporting PoE (Power-over-Ethernet) scenarios. In the case of PoE, the network cable also functions as a power supply cable. But the PoE scenario becomes available with routers having the PoE switch.
However, not all routers are not PoE-optimized, which means that a fully-functioning desk phone needs 2 cables.
In the case of the W41P, the only component that needs to be physically connected via a LAN cable is the W60B base station. The T41S needs only its power supply to function since it links to the base station via the included DD10K dongle.
The base station is the central source of the signal to all the connected devices. As such, it needs to be configured manually. But once configured, up to 8 handsets in total can be initiated automatically.
Thus, the benefits of using a desk phone supporting DECT connection can be summarized in two main points:
1) Reducing the cable clutter;
2) Saving time and efforts due to the plug-and-play, automated deployment.
Users experienced with the T41S (or another device from Yealink’s T4 series) will easily transition to the DECT W41P version.
No alterations have been made to the T41S handset itself, except for its ability for connecting to the DECT base stations. However, all the other specs and features remain unchanged.
Just like the original device, the T41S included in the W41P pack delivers a proper desk phone experience and above-average call quality.
Let’s check how the T41S fairs, with a bit more detail.
Design & Appearance
Upon a glance, the T41S is one classic-looking desk phone device. The familiar analog numeric pad; the 5 hard function keys for performing essential call operations such as muting, redialing, or activating the speakerphone; the large and handy navigation menu.
In terms of basic functionality, the T41S ticks all the boxes. It supports an intercom function, up to a 3-way conference call, and has a phonebook with 800 entries. Moreover, it supports 2 concurrent calls with the option of switching between them.
As far as the materials go, there is more to be desired. Both the phone’s buttons and the surface have a certain kind of a plastic feeling to them, which quality phone products are not known for.
Moreover, it would have been slightly more practical if the entire keypad was backlit. Currently, the only buttons that light up are the mute button and the button for switching to a headset.
The T41S offers plenty of compensation for its flaws.
Unlike the keypad, the T41’s 2.7″ LCD screen does have a backlight. Users who have never worked with the T41S before may find the screen to be somehow small. But in actuality, the screen handily communicates all the calling and menu information it needs to.
Another good thing about the small screen size is that it makes it really easy on the eyes. Something increasingly valuable in working environments, where workers are surrounded by irritating bright screens.
In addition, there is a flashing indicator at the top of the screen. Just like other similarly positioned indicators of desk phones and smartphones alike, its function is to notify about voicemail messages or missed calls.
There are also 6 ‘line keys’ located on both sides of the screen. These keys can be programmed as speed-dial keys, but there’s more to their utility.
These ‘line keys’, also known as ‘DSS keys’ or ‘BLF (Busy Lamp Field) keys’, display the status information for the number they have been assigned to. This means that users can monitor the availability of their colleagues before deciding to contact them.
The physical ‘line keys’ are just six, but the T41S offers up to 15 such DSS keys. The further 9 DSS keys are displayed onto 2 other pages that are easily accessed via the phone’s in-built navigation tools.
DSS keys are configured either from the web-based browser or directly from the handset device itself.
And then right underneath the screen, there are 4 context-sensitive keys. This means that the functions of these keys change in accordance with what users are using the phone for.
For example, during a call, these keys display and perform functions such as ‘Hold’, ‘Transfer’, ‘Conference’ or ‘End Call’.
But when not engaged in a call, the context-sensitive keys act as convenient shortcuts to contacts, history, the DND mode, and the menu.
Overall, like most Yealink phones, the T41S is quite intuitive to operate. Its simplicity of use surely ranks as good enough for being one of the phone’s selling points.
The T41S from the W41P pack comes with an included stand accessory, with 2 adjustable angles.
The handset is wall-mountable, but the wall stand is not included and is purchased separately.
The Calling Experience
As implied above, the T41S delivers superb two-way sound quality. This is due to the Optima HD audio system used by Yealink across all their devices.
In addition, the Opus audio codec ensures a comparatively good call connection, even when the network connection itself is not all that consistent.
Users who rely heavily on the speakerphone will be happy, too. The T41S has full-duplex speakerphone with excellent AEC (‘Anti-Echo Cancellation’) capabilities.
And when tested, the speakerphone performed brilliantly indeed. When subjected to background noises, it managed to deliver a clear speech to the other side of the line.
Another mention-worthy feature is the handset’s HAC (Hearing Aid Compatible) properties. When tested, the handset successfully smoothed out the incoming audio, thus making it easier for people with hearing difficulties.
The T41S has a single USB 2.0 port for inserting the DD10K dongle. When inserted, the handset device is automatically recognized by the associated W60B base station. The plug-and-play deployment process is then initiated.
Alternatively, the USB port can be used for Wi-Fi or Bluetooth dongles, or for inserting a recording device. However, in the context of the W41P pack, the single available port may only be used for the DD10K pairing dongle.
While not stated by most sellers the phone can be used with the EXP40 expansion modules – Read our review of the Yealink expansion modules.
Users who wish to use their Plantronics, Jabra, and Sennheiser DECT cordless headsets can do so via the Yealink EHS36 Hookswitch Adapter. The adapter is not included and must be purchased separately.
The above goes for the power AC 5.0 adapter. It is actually not included in the W41P pack and must be bought in addition.
The Base Station
The other key component of the W41P pack is the W60B base station. The W60B is actually the central component of the W41P ecosystem.
Just like most DECT base stations, the W60B supports a wireless range of up to 50 meters indoors and up to 150 meters outdoors. However, in the context of the W41P, this is hardly a benefit.
The range would have mattered in the case of portable DECT phones. The T41S desk phone, on the other hand, needs to remain plugged into its power socket at all times in order to function.
However, there are other valuable benefits provided by the base station.
In the case of the W60B, a total of 8 devices can be paired to a single base station (in the case of the W41P: the T41S + 7 additional handsets).
Moreover, the base station can support up to 8 concurrent calls. This means that all 8 paired devices can be at a call simultaneously – without this causing any signal obstruction.
The W60B can be connected with up to 5 repeaters for extending the range of its signal.
Repeaters are usually utilized in spacious environments such as hospitals or warehouses.
Because the W60B base functions as a centralized signal hub, it also allows for centralized deployment. The W60B’s Boot mechanism takes away any complex manual settings, thus saving IT time and costs.
Similar to the T41S handset, the W60B base station comes with a stand. However, if it needs to be wall-mounted, the wall stand is purchased additionally.
If the time for updating your office communication hardware is ripe, then the W41P would be both an excellent starting point and a long-term investment.
In exchange for its price, the W41P provides a rock-solid desk phone along with a dependable and future-proof base station.
Needless to say, the W60B base stations support models other than the T41S such as the W52 or CP930W, thus making it one quite flexible and scalable of an office utility.