First Looks: Jabra Wave
Fashionable Mobile Accessory
The mark of a good Bluetooth headset is whether it can be both functional and eye-pleasing at the same time. The former isn't a rare sight, as long as it is capable of handling calls with minimal static and noise.
The Jabra Wave aims to fulfill the second criteria, focusing on aesthetics with a curved design that tries to be inconspicuous by concealing as much of the headset behind the ears as possible. Though this goal is commendable, it dawned on us upon testing that this isn't a one size fits all design. We managed to loop it behind our ears and fit the earpiece comfortably into our ear canal. The same however cannot be said for others, who had problems fitting the Wave comfortably on their ears.
Not a Natural Fit
On that same note, out of ten people we checked with, only three were able to intuitively wear the Wave without instruction, despite its curved design that resembles the shape of your ear. Due to this design, you can use the Wave on either your left or right ears, if it fits. All that's required is to twist the eargel accordingly, and if you find it slightly uncomfortable, there is an alternative eargel which should hopefully fit.
The power and volume buttons are located along the rear outline, which is easily accessible when you reach behind your ears. Just below the volume buttons, you'll spot two indicator lights, one for its battery, the other for its Bluetooth connectivity status. While both indicator lights won't be visible when you are wearing the headset, it still comes in pretty useful for you to check if the Wave is active and connected to any Bluetooth points. Alternatively, you can also tap on the call/end button to get a status report from the Wave.
A Stiff Shortcoming
The mouthpiece is stretched downwards, making contact with your cheeks to capture your voice. After much fumbling, we managed to spot the call/end button on the aforementioned mouthpiece. Though the button has been located, the real issue lies with it being stiff. And if you were to add the provided windshield onto the mouthpiece, you'll find it even harder to press the button. This doesn't bode well for drivers who are attempting to answer a call with their hands occupied.
Once we sorted out the handling issues, we started on the voice calling test on the Wave, specifically its reported wind-noise reduction technology. Riding in a vehicle with the windows wound down, we were informed that our voices tend to become slightly muffled on the other end. Fortunately, this is only true in more extreme wind conditions, with a decent level of clarity being reported when we walked through areas with strong echoes or high traffic noise.
Even with the limited call time (up to almost 30 minutes by our estimate), it is a relief to know that you can keep the headset connected to multiple devices for up to three days on a single charge. If you are eyeing the Jabra Wave, here's our advice: be sure that it is a comfortable fit on your ear (which is very subjective), before you hand over a substantial amount of S$128 to own this decent Bluetooth headset.