One nifty feature in the world of cordless phones is that, with the help of standards such as DECT, various pieces of hardware can often be used interchangeably. Highly useful for situations where a multi-handset set up is in use, the ability to easily add compatible phones which may not even be the same brand is a fantastic way to easily improve your communications capabilities.

A Gigaset Handset With A Different Base?

In particular, we pose the question of, if you can use a Gigaset handset with a different Gigaset base than the one originally provided, or possible even one from a different manufacturer altogether. The short and simple answer is: yes, sometimes. Assuming both the handset and the base are compatible and utilise the same protocols to transfer information (namely, DECT and the DECT protocol GAP) the handset and base will be able to function together.

However, some of the phones features may be specific to the use of the base and handset provided as manufactured, so while making calls and other basic features may work, some more specific features (as an example, accessing an integrated digital answering machine from the handset) may not work as intended or at all.

Just What Is DECT, Anyhow?

DECT, or Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications, is a standard used for the design and manufacture of cordless telephones. DECT has become a ubiquitous standard in Europe in cordless phones and even other types of wireless communications devices such as two way radios and baby monitors. What DECT does is lay out a set of rules for manufacturers of devices such as cordless phones to follow – a list of protocols for how the various pieces of the system communicate with each other.

By standardising the way devices communicate, it becomes possible to have interchangeable parts, which is the case with cordless phones and handsets that both operate on DECT. However, there is more to the DECT standard that allows for this flexibility in hardware. The Generic Access Profile (or GAP) is a set of requirements laid out within the DECT protocol which allows any DECT cordless phone handset to interact with any DECT base.

Gigaset S820A

The Limitations of GAP

Since GAP only provides a generic means of accessing the phones simple functions like placing calls, it doesn't allow for the full feature set of the phone to be used. While closely related products may be able to access some of the phones more advanced features such as its phone book when using mismatched hardware, generally it is unlikely.

To get the most out of your cordless phone system, it is probably best to use it as the manufacturer intended with a properly matched set. This will ensure every feature is accessible and functional as intended.

In Conclusion

If you happen to have a few spare handsets or bases kicking around or would like to upgrade your number of handsets, however, it is a great opportunity to take hold of DECT and GAP compatibility! Some bases can support up to four handsets, others as much as six, so even if you have some DECT/GAP handsets from different brands, you can add them to your existing system.

Be sure to check out for videos on how to register handsets and more.