- Sweatproof / splashproof
- Two sound profiles to choose from
- Crisp sound with really good bass
- Great Bluetooth stability and range
- Quick-charge feature (15min = 1 hour of playback)
- Average battery life
- Ear fins are not contoured
- Ear wings fatigue ears
The Fitbit Flyers are solid wireless workout headphones. They belong in the Top 5 discussion.
So we’ve all been waiting for a new Fitbit device for awhile now and we finally have it with the recently announced Fitbit Ionic smartwatch. But to the surprise of many, Fitbit also announced another new product in a completely new category for them. The company announced the addition of the Fitbit Flyer, a pair of wireless fitness headphones [see on Amazon]. And it makes sense that Fitbit is expanding product lines. The wearable tech industry (and Fitbit in particular) has been struggling a bit lately so I can see them wanting to diversify their offerings. And the very popular wireless workout headphones market is probably a good choice – after all, the two products (wearable tech and fitness earbuds) are very complementary.
The Flyers and the Ionic even work together since the Ionic offers native music storage – that means you don’t have to carry your phone with you while you workout. I can easily see a wife, for example, who purchases the new Ionic smartwatch for her husband also purchase the Flyers as well (or vice versa of course). Or I can see people buying the headphones individually because they just trust the Fitbit brand and associate the company with fitness and working out. Either way, I think it was a good move by Fitbit. Here’s what you need to know about the new Fitbit headphones.
In terms of design, to me they look a lot like the popular Bose SoundSport Wireless Headphones [see on Amazon]. They have the square/circle earbud design with a medium-sized in-line remote. The remote is fairly lightweight – I’d say it’s actually lighter than the remote on the Jaybird Freedom 2. It has three buttons, which work as you would expect – you can adjust volume, pause/play music, skip tracks, access SIRI and answer calls. It also has a built-in mic that works pretty well. The other person on the other end of the call had no issues hearing during our tests.
The headphones also come with three ear-tips, two ear fins and two ear wings to make sure you get the right in-ear fit. However, we’d say stay away from the ear wings – we couldn’t really get the right fit and they started to fatigue our ears. I’d say stick with the ear fins. They’re just more comfortable at the end of day. In addition, they come with an adjustable cable, which makes for a secure fit no matter how intense your workout is. Now speaking of intense workouts, the Flyers are sweatproof and splashproof, which is nice – just make sure you don’t actually submerge them in water.
Now getting to audio quality – the Flyers have crisp, clear sound – I don’t think you’ll have any complaints. Especially assuming you’ll be using these to workout (i.e. your mind and body will be preoccupied with other things). What’s cool about the headphones though is that they come with two different EQ settings – you’ve got the signature sound setting or you can choose the power boost setting to amplify the bass. And the bass is really good, so good it’s almost too much at times. Other than that, mids and highs are solid, they have great range and depth and they can get really loud.
Naturally after talking about audio quality, your mind starts to gravitate towards battery life. Expect to get around 5-6 hours of battery life on a full charge. So good but not great battery life. We’ve seen better on the Powerbeats3 for example, which claim up to double what the Flyers offer.
But like the Powerbeats3 and their mighty A1 chip, the Flyers also offer a quick-charge feature. Plug in the headphones (which charge via micro-USB by the way) for 15 minutes and you get one hour of playback. That’s great if you are on your way out the door and then suddenly realize you forgot to charge them after your last workout. Moving on to Bluetooth stability – the Flyers use Bluetooth 4.2 so you can connect to two devices at once. Bluetooth 4.2 also means longer Bluetooth range and better Bluetooth stability (walls, doors are less intrusive to the signal). We went about 75-90 feet before encountering any disruption to the signal.
The Flyers come in at a MSRP of $130, which is coincidentally the same MSRP of the Jaybird X3, which many consider to be the best wireless workout headphones on the market. Although $130 is a lot of money, I don’t think the price tag is ridiculous. There’s a lot of other wireless headphones out there that are priced even higher that many people would agree are not to the quality of the Flyers. And I wouldn’t be surprised to see these headphones discounted to around $100 after a few months, especially around Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Right now, the Flyers are only available in two colors (Blue and Lunar Gray).
Overall, I was excited to see Fitbit enter the wireless headphones market. I think they did a good job with the Flyers and I wouldn’t be surprised to see them become one of the most popular headphones on the market just give the mass-market appeal of the Fitbit brand.