Is it worth spending Rs 5,999 on this pair of smart specs

Noise, the local wearables brand has made its mark in the market and is one of the top picks for shoppers in India looking for a wearable in the headphones or smartwatch space. Noise is known for its value-for-money wearables and competes with several other Indian and foreign brands.

Now, Noise has expanded its wearables range with a new Noise Labs initiative that will bring new-era smart gadgets to users in India. Noise Labs’ first product, the Noise i1 smart glasses, marks the local brand’s entry into the smart glasses category. The Noise i1 was launched in June at a price of Rs 5,999 in India and is available for purchase from the Noise website (gonoise.com). The Noise i1 smart glasses are made in India and launched in a single black color option. Noise gives replaceable lenses – one clear lens and one with a black tint and if you have a sight problem you can also put your prescribed lens on the Noise i1.

The Noise i1 is priced at Rs 5,999 in India. (Image credit: News18/ Darab Mansoor Ali)

The concept behind these glasses is simple: they are an in-house interpretation of Bose frames that offer the possibility of listening to music and taking calls directly from the glasses. Now I’ve been using the Noise i1 for a while and replaced my regular pair of sunglasses with this “smart glass” to see if it helps and if something like this can actually replace goggles sun in everyday life. Here are my thoughts:

PATTERN

Design-wise, the Noise i1 features a Wayfarer design and shape, with giant temples that also house the speakers, mic, battery, touch controls, connectors, and more. On your face, the Noise i1 looks like any other pair of wayfarer sunglasses, if you look at it from the front. The side profile is also pretty normal unless you look at the pair very closely and notice the volume on the temples. In terms of looks, it’s pretty decent and I was able to wear it in public without any eyeballs showing up at me. Nothing unusual.

The Noise i1 features a wayfarer design with chunky temples.  (Image credit: News18/ Darab Mansoor Ali)
The Noise i1 features a wayfarer design with chunky temples. (Image credit: News18/ Darab Mansoor Ali)

However, the weight of the Noise i1 is well managed, but wearing it for long hours you feel the weight and bulk on your ears which is not what people want in everyday eyewear. I didn’t wear the sunglasses for more than an hour at a time, and while it was never uncomfortable for me, I felt like wearing Noise i1 for longer periods of time would make me ears pain. However, the weight remains well controlled and the Noise i1 weigh almost as much as your usual pair of Ray Bans (or even less). The bulky temples are the only thing that can give people doubts, otherwise it’s a pretty normal and safe Noise design.

The Noise i1 smart glasses come with speakers, mic, battery and more in the temples.  (Image credit: News18/ Darab Mansoor Ali)
The Noise i1 smart glasses come with speakers, mic, battery and more in the temples. (Image credit: News18/ Darab Mansoor Ali)

FEATURES AND USE

When it comes to functionality and usability, the Noise i1 has speakers at the bottom of both temples. The smart glasses can be connected to your phone via Bluetooth, and there are mics inside the temples so you can take calls without having to take your phone out. Touch controls are marked with a single dot on each left and right temple, and there are a bunch of controls for using the touch panels. To play/pause music or answer/end calls, users can double tap the touch screen, to skip a song, touch and hold right temple, touch and hold left temple for previous song, etc

Touch controls are also placed on the left and right temples.  Users can end/answer calls, play/pause music, skip tracks, and more with touch controls.  (Image credit: News18/ Darab Mansoor Ali)
Touch controls are also placed on the left and right temples. Users can end/answer calls, play/pause music, skip tracks, and more with touch controls. (Image credit: News18/ Darab Mansoor Ali)

The Noise i1’s speakers provide a rather average audio experience, if you compare it to TWS headphones or any other audio product out there. However, for a sunglasses frame, the audio quality turned out to be quite decent, in my opinion. Of course, in a noisy environment you won’t hear much, since the speakers are placed on the arms of the frame, but in a closed or quiet environment you can actually hear details in your music. You can feel the bass and mid/bass from the Noise i1 speakers, which is pretty good. The quality can be discussed, but the details are there. However, for listening to music, it is not a very good device, because the sound does not go directly to your ears and if you are in a public transport like a subway or a bus, or even an airplane, the people sitting next to you will be able to hear the music, so it’s not exactly the best device for listening to music.

For taking calls, the Noise i1 makes a lot more sense. We wear sunglasses almost all the time if we are outdoors in a sunny environment. Being able to take calls directly from these sunglasses without having to pull out your phone is an idea that almost anyone can accept. But what about the quality? Well, the Noise i1’s mic is good enough for you to take calls. Again, it works best when there is less disturbance, but the mic is decent and I was able to speak fine without too many issues with this mic. Also, touching your glasses to take calls and talk without having any other devices on you is a pretty cool thing to do.

The Noise i1 is a first-generation product from Noise Labs, and the company plans to release more smart wearables from its Noise Lab initiative.  (Image credit: News18/ Darab Mansoor Ali)
The Noise i1 is a first-generation product from Noise Labs, and the company plans to release more smart wearables from its Noise Lab initiative. (Image credit: News18/ Darab Mansoor Ali)

VERDICT

The Noise i1 are the first smart glasses from Noise. For a first attempt, Noise has done a decent job of delivering a complete product, and it does what it’s made for. The design is great and one of the best things about it is that you can wear these glasses anywhere and you won’t look out of place (which we’ve seen with similar products in the past). In terms of usability, the Noise i1 might not be the best product for listening to music or taking calls, but of course being able to answer calls directly from your sunglasses is really, really cool.

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