There's a huge diversity in the design of true wireless earbuds, but we can guarantee you've never seen buds like Huawei's new FreeBuds Lipstick before
By Alex Walker-Todd
True wireless earbuds come in all shapes and sizes, usually slotting into an unassuming pill-shaped charging case, meant for slipping into a bag or pocket. Huawei’s newest ‘buds, however, look a little different… very different, in fact. Meet the Huawei FreeBuds Lipstick.
If you’re familiar with the FreeBuds range, they’re Huawei’s answer to Airpods and have actually got in ahead of Apple with certain features across the generations – like wireless charging support built into the case of the FreeBuds 3.
The FreeBuds Lipstick takes a different approach, reimagining what is typically just a functional facet of true wireless earbuds hardware – the charging case – and turning it into an object meant to exude a sense of style, offering a far bolder aesthetic than we’re used to seeing from such things.
The quirky lipstick simile almost feels like an afterthought, but it’s one that concisely portrays the look and feel this distinct charging case is trying to convey.
Finished in “luxury-grade” polished stainless steel, the black and gold octagonal steel case is a far cry from the rounded plastic hockey puck or pill that accompanies the standard entries in the range. The kicker comes when you remove the magnetically attached lid to reveal a pair of contrasting red FreeBuds in-ear true wireless earphones.
We’ve seen red FreeBuds before – with the
FreeBuds 3, 4 and
4i all offering up a red colour within their midst – but never quite like this.
While Huawei didn’t outright call the buds included in the FreeBuds Lipstick case
FreeBuds 4, the design and hardware suggest they’re practically identical.
Unlike the ‘i’ and ‘
Pro‘ ranges, the standard FreeBuds forgo any silicon ear tips and are formed almost entirely from sculpted plastic. Using what Huawei calls ‘Open-fit ANC 2.0’, the FreeBuds Lipstick offer adaptive active noise cancellation and EQ tuning that projects a tone into your ears when you put them on to apply one of 16 modes for the best audio quality, relative to the wearer’s surroundings.
Just like the FreeBuds 4, they feature 14.3mm dynamic drivers, with a frequency range spanning up to 40kHz, while battery life on the Buds themselves is rated at four hours, while the all-important case provides an additional 22 hours of playback.
At the time of writing, Huawei had not provided any details on pricing or when the earphones will be available to buy. Once we have this information we’ll update this article.
We also touch on the FreeBuds Lipstick unveiling as part of episode 88 of our weekly podcast,