Huawei launches the Huawei FreeBuds 3i

Huawei just launched new Bluetooth earphones, the FreeBuds 3i, being similar to the FreeBuds 3 but with silicone tips.

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Huawei has just made official the FreeBuds 3i in Europe. These new Bluetooth earphones borrow most of the features of the FreeBuds 3, but come with the same design as previous models, such as the FreeBuds (2018) or the FreeBuds Lite from early 2019, having silicone tips.

As previously mentioned, the FreeBuds 3i borrow some features from the FreeBuds 3, such as the active noise cancellation, a feature that had been restricted to wired earphones or larger headsets until then. According to the manufacturer, the FreeBuds 3i can lower the ambient noise level by up to 32 decibels, making them ideal to listen to high-quality music, movies or properly hear the interlocutor while on calls. For calls, users can rest assured that their voice will be heard properly, thanks to three different microphones placed at different parts of the FreeBuds, enhancing the voice quality while avoiding other ambient noises.

Huawei also promises great sound quality, which is usually difficult to achieve on these devices due to their relatively small size, with the FreeBuds 3i coming with a highly-sensitive diaphragm and 10 millimetres dynamic drivers. From our experience with previous models from the company, such as the FreeBuds (2018) or the FreeBuds Lite (2019), sound quality shouldn’t be an issue, being, in most cases, quite good.

We also see improvements to the pairing system, which now goes through the Huawei AI Life application, just as the FreeBuds 3, the Huawei x Gentle Monster smart glasses or the various compatible IoT devices, something we’ve been hoping to see for a while. Something that hasn’t changed are the controls, with the double-tap used to play and pause the music, or answer and end calls. However, we see the addition of being able to enable and disable the active noise cancellation without going through the phone, by simply long-tapping on the earbuds. The earbuds also automatically stop and start the music when putting them on or taking them off, a feature we’ve seen on multiple other products of the manufacturer.

Lastly, in terms of battery, we see a slight improvement, with the FreeBuds 3i lasting 3.5 hours on a single charge, and the case delivering up to 14.5 hours of battery life. By comparison, the original FreeBuds from 2018 lasted 3 hours on a single charge and the case 10 hours, while the FreeBuds Lite (2019) promised 3 hours on a single charge and 12 hours with the case. However, the FreeBuds 3 remain ahead, with 4 hours on a single charge and 20 hours with the case. For charging, we find a type-C port on the case, which we are thankful for, seeing the manufacturer had downgraded the FreeBuds Lite (2019) by putting a micro-USB port. In other words, users can use their type-C charging cables of their smartphone to charge the case of the FreeBuds 3i.

Pricing-wise, Huawei is charging between 99€ and 119€ for the FreeBuds 3i, depending on the country. In France and Italy, these cost 99€, while in Germany the manufacturer is asking 119€. However, there are also various launch promotions, such as the Huawei Band 4 gifted in France, or the Huawei Mini Speaker gifted in Germany. Availability-wise, it once again varies from country to country, with France, Germany and Italy already having launched the product, while it has yet to come out in Spain or the UK.

Here are some other features of the FreeBuds 3i:

  • 41.8×23.7×19.8 mm (per earbud)/80.7×35.4×29.2 mm (charging case)
  • ~5.5 grams (per earbud)/~51 grams (charging case)
  • 37mAh (per earbud)/410mAh (charging case), USB-C charging port/cable
  • ~1 hour charging time per earbud, ~115 minutes in total
  • Up to 3.5 hours playback/2.5 hours talk time per charge, up to 14.5/10.5 hours with charging case
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • 4 different sizes of silicone tips (XS, S, M, L)
  • Available in ceramic white
  • Price ranging from 99.99€ to 119€

And here are some more images of the FreeBuds 3i, for those interested:

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