Huawei FreeBuds 4i, hands on: Affordable wireless noise cancelling earbuds Review

Wi-fi earbuds are readily available at a selection of rate factors, and it can be tough to operate out which are well worth possessing and which are not. For a checklist rate of £79.99 (inc. VAT, at present discounted to £59.99), Huawei’s FreeBuds 4i are a neat and relaxed set of buds with fantastic sounds cancelling thinking of their reasonably priced rate. But there are some sizeable annoyances. 


Huawei statements the FreeBuds 4i produce ten hours audio listening without the need of sounds cancelling, or 7.5h with ANC. For voice phone calls, the durations are 6.5h without the need of ANC, 5.5 with ANC.

Image: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

The Huawei FreeBuds 4i sit in a smaller oval-shaped plastic circumstance measuring 48.0mm by one.8mm by 27.5 mm deep, and weighing 36.5g. The circumstance has a flat back again so it is really stable on a desk or desk, and I located it slipped into a jacket pocket or the aspect-pocket of a rucksack quickly. On a desk the USB-C charging circumstance provides alone nicely. Casing ergonomics definitely issues, and below it is really all fantastic — apart from, if I’m getting picky, for the lack of a spring release on the lid. 

I was sent a white circumstance and buds, but there are also black and purple versions readily available. The box also consists of a wonderful very long demand cable and two pairs of silicone recommendations, with a third pair previously equipped to the buds.  

The design of the 5.5g buds on their own is unremarkable. The stems could possibly be a little very long, but not annoyingly so, and the wedge-shaped earpiece created a fantastic match for my ears. My left ear is not a lover of buds and tends to throw them out or reward me with niggly soreness after a handful of hours of wear. I expert neither issue below.  

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Huawei premiums the 55mAh buds as fantastic for ten hours of audio playback with sounds cancelling disabled, 7.5 hours if it is really enabled, and 6.5 hours of voice phone calls with sounds cancelling disabled or 5.5 hours enabled. Boosted from the 215mAh battery inside the circumstance, audio playback extends to 22 hours. 10 minutes of charging supplies four hours of audio. A rapid early-early morning demand observed me by way of the day without the need of incident.

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I paired the buds with the Android cell phone I occurred to be testing at the time and the work could not be easier. Activate Bluetooth pairing on your handset, open the charging circumstance, press the pairing button on its aspect, and just about quickly the deed is finished. The controls are uncomplicated: tap on a bud to participate in, pause, skip forward and back again, and contact up voice support very long press to cycle by way of ANC on, ANC off and recognition method. 

I located the tap gestures a little unresponsive, while the tap-and-maintain gestures ended up recognised perfectly just about every time. There are a few of other annoyances. Quantity has to be controlled on the supply product and playback proceeds when a bud is removed from the ear, so this too has to be modified on the supply product. It really is also annoying that you can find no application in the Google Play shop for fine command, such as producing equaliser configurations. This is owing to the reality that Huawei no for a longer period has entry to Google applications. There is an application, readily available to entrepreneurs of Huawei handsets, on its own AppGallery, but I was not testing on a Huawei handset, so that was not an option. 


Huawei FreeBuds 4i: color solutions.

Image: Huawei

In general I located the good quality of audio playback satisfactory, if not remarkable. Converse radio and phone calls ended up fine, as was general track record audio though pondering about a thing else. But when I concentrated on listening to audio the lack of bass tones grew to become obvious. I also located the buds just a little bit too silent for use though out and about — listening to the radio though on a wander or operate, for instance.  

Very good circumstance and bud design and respectable battery daily life are offset by fairly unreliable contact controls and a lack of bass tones for really serious audio listening. Even now, Huawei supporters with entry to its application shop could possibly obtain them an attractive acquire.

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