Jabra Sport Pulse Review: Forget Fitness Trackers, These Earbuds Are Better

Unless you’ve been meditating in a cave, you’re likely aware that fitness trackers and wearables are taking the tech world by storm. From Fitbit to Apple Watch and beyond, from wristbands to sport bras - everything can be ‘smart’ these days. Yet, Jabra has its own solution with the Sport Pulse ($199.99) wireless Bluetooth earbuds that can track your heartbeat. That means no guessing whether or not you’re in your heart rate range for an optimal workout. Needless to say, I was excited to give them a try.

I’m a sucker for good packaging and Jabra didn’t disappoint. Everything you need comes with the Jabra Sport Pulse including different sizes in eargels and earwings. This is a huge bonus for me because nearly every earbud I’ve tried (even the ones including different sizes) have been too big and uncomfortable for my ears (they’re small, what can I say.) Jabra includes four different sizes from extra-small to large. The company also includes a carrying case about the size of a credit card in the shape of a lima bean. It makes a perfect case for your top-notch earbuds. And of course, a USB cord for charging them.

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To set the earbuds up, I downloaded the Jabra Sport Life app and connected them via Bluetooth. I quite like the Jabra app, but the earbuds are also compatible with RunKeeper, Endomondo, Runtastic, and more. Sitting at my desk, I opened the Jabra app and bam! There was my heartbeat, ticking away. Then, it was time to play music. Now, I’m no audiophile, but I was immediately impressed. Listening to the Hamilton musical soundtrack, I could suddenly hear far more layers, instruments, and bass than was previously detectable with regular earbuds. So Jabra sold me on packaging and sound...now for the real test: fitness tracking.

The app allows you to select your Activity such as Walking, Running, Swimming. Yes, you heard me, swimming. The Jabra Sport Pulse is totally activity proof with US Military rain, shock, sand, and dust standards. In the app, you can also select the type of workout or intended goal such as Target Pace, Heart Rate Zone Training, Cross-Training, etc. In the menu of the app is the option to do Fitness Tests too; there are four that determine endurance capability, test whether or not you’re over-training, and personalize your heart rate training zone. The app also tracks your route via GPS.

Testing these functions out was easy, and I was pretty amazed to see how detailed my workout summary is afterwards. Your History, in the app, shows each time you’ve started a workout and tracks things like Activity, Average and Maximum Heart Rate, Duration, Distance, Calories, etc. It also gives you the option to make personal notes about your workout and add a picture. One of my favorites features of the summary is the map which shows my route and color codes the sections to indicate when and where I was in the Light, Fat Burn, Cardio, Intense, or Maximum training zone. Plus, below that is a detailed analysis graphing out the amount of time spent in each area.

Pros:

  • Could replace a fitness tracker if steps aren’t your main focus.

  • So much fantastic information from each workout; heart rate zone tools are my favorite.

  • Great sound and the earbuds definitely don’t budge.

  • 5hr battery life; multiple eargel/earwing sizes; life-proof

Cons:

  • I wish the Bluetooth capabilities covered more distance. I don’t think I could swim Olympic pool laps sans phone without losing connection.

  • Pricey but could replace a fitness tracker.

Overall Verdict:

Heart rate zones are the best way to get the optimal workout towards your specific goals. While most fitness trackers focus on counting steps, you could leave the wristband at home and track your 30min, 5 days a week (minimal) workouts with Jabra Sport Pulse. For all around information about your exercise, this goes beyond what I’ve seen some trackers be able to cover. For top-notch earbuds that improve your workout, I absolutely love these earbuds.

 
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Conner Carey's picture

Conner Carey's writing can be found at conpoet.com. She is currently writing a book, creating lots of content, and writing poetry via @conpoet on Instagram. She lives in an RV full-time with her mom, Jan and dog, Jodi as they slow-travel around the country.