Skip to main content

This ridiculous smartwatch has a hidden pair of earbuds inside

Smartwatches are getting weird again, and this time, Huawei is leading the charge. The company has given us a teaser of its next wearable, the Huawei Watch Buds. This one looks like another well-crafted smartwatch from Huawei — until you see its lid opening to reveal two wireless earbuds.

Yeah, you heard that right. The dial area lifts up and presents you with a pair of true wireless earbuds safely nestled in their magnetic cavities. As you might expect, these are not your bulky noise-canceling chunky earbuds or the AirPods-style earbuds with a stem.

Huawei Watch Buds (smartwatch with built-in earbuds) to launch on December 2#huawei #huaweiWatchbuds

— Anvin (@ZionsAnvin) November 30, 2022

These are bullet-shaped earbuds that are small enough to be fitted inside the smartwatch’s main housing. The design is not novel, though, as they bear a striking similarity with the Nokia True Wireless Earbuds and the Motorola Verve Buds.

What really stands out here is the smartwatch engineering. Huawei’s design team somehow managed to create enough space inside the main body to fit two earbuds, and also added a magnetic wireless charging system in there to keep these audio gizmos juiced up.

Huawei Watch Buds - (2022) Hands On, First Look

If you think that the teaser wasn’t enough, someone shot a video of the smartwatch in what looks like a retail store. As mentioned earlier, the exterior design doesn’t really stand out in terms of aesthetics, but once it pops open, it really takes you by surprise.

The Huawei Watch Buds were supposed to launch in December, but the event was postponed at the last moment. Huawei’s official Weibo channel hasn’t offered any explanation yet, and a fresh launch date hasn’t bee revealed so far, either.

Huawei Central

This is the kind of gizmo wizardry that inspires me, and I’m definitely looking forward to it as my holiday season tech purchase. Will it launch in the U.S.? Highly unlikely. And if this Politico report is anything to go by, it is highly unlikely that you will find it across Europe either.

Bring back weird tech

Huawei’s earbud trickery is quite exciting, but Nokia pulled off a similar stunt earlier this year. The company somewhat revived the iconic XpressMusic lineup in July with the Nokia 5710 XpressAudio — a feature phone with a  few smarts, this retro callback actually hid a pair of earbuds at the top.

The Nokia 5710 XpressAudio phone with its earbuds in the back.

You just have to slide the cover at the back to reveal a pair of stem-style earbuds. Is it cool? Hell yeah! And for a shelf price of just $90, why wouldn’t it be an impulse buy for a tech nerd? Or it could just be a burner phone for short-lived digital detox resolutions.

But hey, we’re talking about smartwatches, which makes me wonder — where did all the wacky experiments go? Let’s not forget the uber-stylish Calendar Watch, which was a ZTE subsidiary that really made a huge splash or the Nubia Alpha smartwatch from 2019.

The Nubia Alpha smartwatch.

That last one was far ahead of its time, thanks to a wraparound-style display that made it look like an Omnitrix inspired by the wonderful world of Spielberg’s Ready Player One. It had its kinks, but it was quite a promising project. It’s just a shame that Nubia never made an upgraded version, one that had more reliable contactless hand gesture support.

In 2018, a company named Shell launched a smartwatch that turned into a full-fledged smartphone. You just had to take the round main body off the strap, and two prongs popped out, each with a speaker and mic at the rounded end. In fact, its battery charged using the motion of your hands to generate electricity.

Concept render of the IBM foldable smartwatch.

Want more weirdness? Well, in 2019, computing giant IBM filed a patent for a smartwatch that unfolds to become — wait for it — a tablet. Titled “Variable Display Size for an Electronic Device,” the patent schematics imagined a smartwatch with a foldable panel, in the same year when Samsung was still reeling from the disaster of its first foldable phone.

Right now, weirdness in the smartwatch segment is leaning more toward the innovation side. Take, for example, the Huawei Watch D, which cleverly has a pressure chamber system right inside the watch strap to monitor blood pressure levels without any calibration hassles.

Both Apple and Samsung are eying noninvasive blood glucose monitoring for their upcoming smartwatches. Blood alcohol level measurement and deeper chemical analysis of sweat are also on the evolution radar. A bit of mad smartwatch innovation never hurts, and even if it’s something not especially practical like the Huawei Watch Buds, it’s still exciting to see.

Editors' Recommendations

Nadeem Sarwar
Nadeem is a tech journalist who started reading about cool smartphone tech out of curiosity and soon started writing…
Both gamers and audiophiles will want Asus’ latest dual-mode earbuds
Asus ROG Cetra earbuds with case and optional cable.

To go along with the new Asus ROG Phone 6 and ROG Phone 6 Pro smartphones, Asus has a new pair of wireless headphones made especially for gaming. Except they’re not only wireless, as inside the box is a cable that attaches to the earbuds and adds a quad DAC, giving you the option of how to listen. Called the Asus ROG Cetra True Wireless Pro earbuds, they’re designed to appeal to anyone who wants gaming prowess, convenience, and audiophile quality.

Audiophile quality, from wireless earbuds? Yes. The ROG Cetra uses a pair of 10mm drivers and supports Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Sound platform with AptX Lossless for 24-bit, 96kHz CD-quality audio, making it one of the first to arrive with this combination, alongside the NuraTrue Pro headphones. Not enough for you? That’s where the cable comes in. Switch from the Bluetooth connection to the included USB Type-C cable, and it adds an ESS 9280 Quad DAC, which Asus also uses in its ROG Fusion II 300 USB headset, ready to deliver great audio without any lag.

Read more
Poco’s F4 GT gaming phone has magnetic pop-up triggers
The Poco F4 GT's side view with its magnetic triggers.

Is your new phone really a gaming phone if it doesn’t have some kind of shoulder-mounted triggers on it? Poco doesn’t think so, and its new F4 GT smartphone has a set of “magnetic triggers that pop up, standing tall in preparation for battle,” according to the press release. We haven’t seen them in action at the time of writing, but this sounds exactly like the kind of gimmicky feature we love to see.

Further defined as, “levitating magnetic pop up triggers,” the buttons have apparently been tested for more than 1.5 million presses and with 100 different games, plus they can be used as shortcuts to activate the camera, flashlight, or screen recording features when you’re not playing a game. Shoulder buttons have been seen on various gaming phones already, including the Asus ROG Phone 5 and the RedMagic 7 Pro, but Poco’s version does sound suitably different, making us keen to try them out.

Read more
Every true wireless earbud feature explained
Jaybird Vista 2 earbuds in palm with water pouring.

Are you interested in buying a set of true wireless earbuds, but you’re overwhelmed by the sheer number of brands, models, features, and prices on Amazon? You’re not alone. Ever since Apple launched the AirPods in 2016, the true wireless earbuds space has exploded. More choice is always a good thing for buyers, but it also means you need to do a little more research before you make your decision.

We can help. We’ll explain every single feature and buzzword that you might run into and what to look out for when those buzzwords sound too good to be true.

Read more