The FreeBuds 4i is the latest budget wireless earphones from Huawei with several standout features including ambient noise cancellation, high-quality sound and good battery life.
|Color Options:||Ceramic White, Carbon Black, Red|
23.9mm x 21mm x 37.5mm (DxWxH)
Weight: About 5.5 g
27.5mm x 61.8mm x 48.0 mm (DxWxH)
Weight: About 36.5 g
|Connectivity:||Bluetooth compatibility: BT 5.2|
Pop-up & pair: supported *
Wear detection: supported
*Requires smartphones running EMUI10 or above.
|Audio Technology:||Active noise cancellation|
Call noise cancellation
|Driver:||10 mm dynamic|
Per earbud: 55 mAh
Charging case: 215 mAh
Wired: USB Type-C
The packaging includes the charging case, earphones, a USB-C charging cable, manuals and replacement earbuds in three different sizes. There is no power adapter or a protective cover included for the case to prevent the it from being scratched.
The charging case is oval in shape and comes in a glossy white texture. At the bottom is the USB-C charging port (the case does not support wireless charging) and a LED indicator for battery status. And on the right is another button for pairing.
The earphones are magnetically held inside the charging case. A slight drawback here is that it’s somewhat difficult to remove the earphones as the magnets hold them firmly in the case
Design & Build
The FreeBuds 4i is available in three colors – Ceramic White, Carbon Black and Red.
The earphones themselves look well-designed and have a glossy, rectangular-shaped stem. They are lightweight, compact, easy to wear and comes with touch sensors for controlling playback, volume, calls and switching ANC modes.
Dynamic noise cancellation
One of the main features of the FreeBuds 4i is dynamic noise cancellation which reduces ambient sounds up to 40dB. It detects the type of environment you are in using microphones to automatically switch between the three different ANC modes: cozy mode, general mode or ultra mode.
The Awareness mode amplifies the surrounding noise, letting you hear essential sounds and people talking around you.
AI Life App
Headphone functions can be controlled through Huawei’s AI Life app for Huawei phones. On iOS the app is not available yet. The app lets you see the battery status, update firmware, switch between different ANC modes or detect if you are using the right earplugs for your ears.
The earphones support touch gestures. There are touch sensors at stem of each earphone which help control media playback, volume, calls etc. Once you get the hang of it, they work effortlessly.
While the FreeBuds 4i can be charged via the USB-C cable, they also support wireless charging.
Fit Level Detection
The earphones have a built-in function to analyze the best earplug size for your ears, helping you pick up the most suitable ones to enjoy better noise cancellation and a more immersive sound.
Performance & Audio Quality
The FreeBuds 4i feature 10mm dynamic drivers that delivers well-balanced audio quality, both in multimedia playback and during calls. The mids and treble are clear without distortion, even at high volume levels. Bass is a bit lacking when compared to the Freebuds Pro but reasonable for the price range.
Noise cancellation works very well, it comes with only one ANC mode but is reasonably effective.
Touch gestures are quickly recognized and work flawlessly once you get used to it.
Connectivity & Battery
The Huawei FreeBuds 4i uses Bluetooth 5.2 to pair with other devices. On Huawei devices, the FreeBuds 4i is instantly recognized. On other devices, pairing is done via a long-press of the pairing button on the right edge of the charging case.
The Bluetooth connectivity is stable without any delays between the devices, each earbud features two Bluetooth antennas ensuring good signal coverage.
The earphones themselves have a 55mAh capacity each and the charging case 215mAh. Depending on usage, the FreeBuds 4i lasts between 4 to 6 hours with ANC enabled and 8 to 10 hours with it disabled.
With the charging case, total battery life can reach 22h of music playback with ANC off, and for calls, up to 14h with the charging case and ANC off.
You can also use your smartphone or tablet to reverse-charge the charging case while you are on the go. The Freebuds 4i can be ready for 4 hours of listening with just 10 minutes in the case.
If you use a Huawei phone, it notifies you of the battery status every time you open the charging case.
The Huawei FreeBuds 4i offers an attractive package at a wallet-friendly price including active noise cancellation, good sound quality and battery life.
A major drawback is that there is no integration with virtual assistants such as Google, Alexa or Huawei’s own Celia. This means that there is no way to receive notifications or control other devices using your voice.
Another disappointing one is that some features such as auto-pairing are available only on Huawei devices and the AI Life app is not available on iOS.
The FreeBud 4i retails for AED 299 and is available in Ceramic White, Carbon Black and Red.