Motorola probably isn’t the first name you think of when you think of headphones, but that’s not stopping the company from making a reasonable entrance into the market nonetheless. Introducing the Motorola VerveOnes — a pair of wireless earbuds targeted at the increasingly mobile world.
The move makes sense for Motorola. The company wants to be your one-stop shop for all your mobile needs. But are these wireless earbuds the right choice for those looking to cut the cord? According to our review, the answer is a resounding “absolutely not.”
The first thing to note about these earbuds is that they look pretty great. They feature a sleek black and gray color scheme, with charging pins on the inside of them and a button on the outer surface.
You’ll also notice that they’re quite a lot bulkier than your standard earbuds. That’s not just because they’re wireless — they’re a little larger than other wireless earbuds we’ve seen too.
Of course, that extra bulk doesn’t necessarily change that much other than the fact that they’re a little more noticeable than other earbuds. They’re still not heavy enough to be irritating, although their weight may be a contributing factor to they’re inability to stay in the ear — that’s something we’ll talk about later.
The buttons on the earbuds perform the usual functions you would expect from wireless headphones — press and hold to turn on and keep holding to pair with a new device. You can also use this button to control music playback and even tweak the EQ options.
The charging case for the earbuds is also pretty well designed. It’s shaped like a cylinder, and the earbuds slot inside — then, simply turn it around to hide the earbuds and protect them while they’re inside your bag or pocket. Sometimes it can be a little hard to fit the earbuds inside their charging spot, but once you’ve done it a few times you’ll figure out how to slide it in properly.
While the earbuds aren’t too big to be heavy, it seems like they are too big to stay in. After trying each and every eartip included with the earbuds, we came to the conclusion that it has little to do with ear size or shape — these earbuds just aren’t great at staying inside your ears.
We should mention that most of the eartip testing was conducted while sitting at a desk. Forget about using these do go running (or even a brisk walk) — these will fall out in a heart beat.
Even when these earbuds did manage to stay inside the ear for more than a few seconds, they got uncomfortable, and quick. We didn’t want to wear these for more than a few minutes at a time. Sure, some of that could be due to the fact that we had to keep shoving them inside our ear canal every three seconds, but the point is that these don’t feel like the soft earbuds that they should feel like.
We’re not going to hold back.
In the performance department, these earbuds are abysmal. Not only did they largely fail to link up to each other for more than a few seconds, but they also refused to connect to a listening device so often, that we almost gave up and scrapped the review.
Pairing these earbuds with a smartphone is a nightmare come true, especially if you want to use the Hubble VerveOnes app with them. First of all, for some unknown reason, you cannot pair the earbuds with the app while they’re in your ear — they have to be in their charging case instead. Why? Who knows, but the reason probably isn’t good enough. Secondly, even when the earbuds are paired with the phone and finally in your ear, it’s a hit and miss as to whether or not they’ll actually play music. Half the time, my phone — which also happens to be made by Motorola but has a much different quality — decided it best to send audio through the phone’s built-in speakers instead of to the earbuds.
Okay, so pairing with a smartphone wasn’t the best idea — how about a computer. Pairing with the computer was a whole lot easier than the phone, which is a shame. If it worked properly, it seems like the app could be somewhat useful. It offers the ability to to change EQ settings, shows you how much battery life you have left, and so on — all very useful information if it related to earbuds that actually worked.
Once the Motorola VerveOnes were paired with the computer, they still suffered plenty of connectivity issues, juggling audio from ear to ear, and unable to hold a constant stream of audio for more than a few seconds.
The worst part of all of this? Motorola definitely should have fixed the issues by now. Articles from months ago showed the same issues, and Motorola promised that the issues would be fixed. Surprise, surprise — at least according to the Hubble VerveOnes app, our earbuds are up to date.
It’s such a shame that the Motorola VerveOnes performed so badly, because when we were able to listen to some music, they actually sounded pretty good. It’s nice that you can change the EQ settings around, and despite their small size, the VerveOnes’ drivers offer plenty of bass and plenty of highs — two of the things we most often find lacking in earbuds.
The sound was perhaps a little midsy when we were testing them, but not overly so — and we suspect that could have been changed if we were able to keep the earbuds connected to the app long enough to change the EQ.
Unfortunately, we had to cut our review of the earbuds’ sound quality short — the connectivity issues were too distracting to properly evaluate the sound.
Steer clear from the Motorola VerveOnes. The dream of wireless earbuds that are comfortable and can hold a decent connection is very much still a dream — which is a shame, especially considering the fact that these earbuds look pretty decent and offer an app that seems like it should have plenty to bring to the table. These earbuds are not worth the $200 price tag they come with — in fact, they wouldn’t be worth a quarter of the price.
If you’re looking for a new pair of earbuds, look elsewhere.
|Frequency response||Unknown||Noise attenuation||Unknown|
|Driver size||Unknown||In-line controls||No|
|Rated impedance||Unknown||Eartip material||Rubber|
|Total harmonic distortion||Unknown||Magnet material||Unknown|
|Rated input power||Unknown||Water resistance||No|
|Maximum input power||Unknown||Battery life||12 hours play time|
|Wireless connection||Yes, Bluetooth 4.1||Wireless distance||33 feet|
|Wired connection||No||Cable length||N/A|
|Detachable cable||No||Case type||Hard Case|
|Weight||68g (2.4oz)||In-the-box||Charging case, charging cable, eartips|
|Active noise cancellation||No||Colors||Black|