While Jabra may have made its name in the rather annoying business of Bluetooth earpieces – you know, the kind that blink at you while someone seemingly argues with themselves – the company has been steadily zeroing in on creating a must-have pair of sports headphones. And with a sleek design, wireless connection, and the latest “it” feature for earbuds, heart rate monitoring, Jabra’s new Sport Pulse appear to be the company’s most advanced attempt yet.
The Sport Pulse borrow from Bose’s Quiet Comfort QC20 and others, which use an earhook tip at the top to keep the buds in place – and that’s a good thing. We’ve found this method to be extremely effective at preventing earphones from coming loose. The design of the buds is impressive in other ways as well, cast in a bullet-tipped metal casing which is sweat and weatherproof, while also taking up a lot less real estate than the company’s Sport Wireless + wrap-around headphones.
But it’s the interior of these headphones that is really designed to turn heads. The Sport Pulse monitor your heart rate and route the information to the Jabra Sport Life app for Android and iOS to create what the company calls an “all-in-one training solution.” The system includes real-time voice coaching for workout feedback, as well as the ability to set personal goals based on distance, time, burned calories, and desired heart rate. Jabra claims the system can even help stop you from pushing too hard with its Orthostatic heart-rate test.
On-board control for the headphones, including power, volume, and song skip is handled with the inline control wand on the connecting band, which also sports an omni-directional mic for fielding phone calls. The headphones are designed to pair automatically to your phone via the latest Bluetooth version 4.0.
As for the sound – which has always been a bit lacking in our experience with Jabra headphones – the company has employed a dose of Dolby DSP, and users will also have the ability to tailor the sound to their taste through the app with a graphic equalizer. The app even works with YouTube to add “full-spectrum sound” to all those engrossing ice-bucket videos.
Other features for the headphones include wind-noise reduction, a rechargeable battery with a 5-hour runtime and 240 hours of standby, NFC pairing for compatible devices, and a protective carrying bag.
As one might imagine, the Sport Pulse won’t be found in the bargain bin, boasting a price tag of $200. Then again, if you’re looking for a serious training solution for your workout routine, these buds offer a powerful tool box of features to get you on track. We’ll have a full review coming as soon as we can get our hands on a pair, but if you’d like to get in line now, you can pre-order the headphones at Jabra’s website, with a release date set for October 1.