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Thursday, September 23, 2021

Fire Boltt Talk review: Best smartwatch under Rs 5,000?

The Fire Boltt Talk is a decent smartwatch and serves its purpose. You can pick up calls and talk to anyone without pulling out the phone.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Rs. 4999 (at launch)
Written by Ankita Garg | Lucknow |
Updated: July 23, 2021 11:04:02 am
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Smartwatches are getting better, both in terms of design and features. Many users now rely on their smartwatches to check calls, messages and control music, which eliminates the need to pull out their phone all the time. While most of the affordable wearables offer basic fitness tracking features, the new Fire-Boltt Talk comes with a unique calling feature.

It offers the ability to receive calls, a feature which you will mostly discover on expensive watches. The device can also track your blood oxygen levels (SpO2), heart rate, sleeping patterns, along with the usual array of fitness features. The Fire Boltt Talk is priced at Rs 4,999. Let’s see if this smartwatch is worth your money.

Fire Boltt Talk review: What is good?

The Fire Boltt Talk looks very similar to the Realme Watch S series. It has a traditional round form factor and a large display. So, you won’t have issues reading messages or notifications on the smartwatch. The watch has an attractive design with sturdy build quality. The rear panel is plastic and the device’s case is made of metal.

While the company hasn’t mentioned if there is Gorilla Glass protection, the display quality is quite good, given the watch fell from my hands twice and didn’t pick up any noticeable scratches. The display is bright enough outdoors, but there is no ambient sensor which would have helped manage brightness levels in different lighting conditions.

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The smartwatch is not very heavy and comfortable enough to wear all day. You also get good quality rubber straps. The lower part of the strap is textured to offer a better grip. The straps are removable, so you can replace them in case you want a strap matching your outfit.

The Fire Boltt Talk can continuously monitor heart rate and report the readings every 30 minutes. While there is no way to change the time for monitoring this, it does save battery life, without compromising on user data. One basic feature which is missing on this watch is you don’t get alerts when your heart rate is very low or high. The heart rate readings seemed fine during our testing period and were similar to Realme Watch S Pro.

The watch also measure blood oxygen levels or SpO2, which is yet another crucial feature that will help you know if there is any reduction in oxygen saturation level in the blood. I compared its results with a standard fingertip pulse oximeter and the watch offered an almost accurate number. The oximeter showed 98-99% and the wearable displayed 96-97%. The good thing is the device took just two seconds to register the readings.

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It didn’t record steps while travelling in a car, which is always a bonus for a wearable device. The Fire-Boltt Talk registered around 90 steps when I manually counted 100 steps. The result was never really close to the actual count. It was either 110 or 89. This is fine as the budget smartwatches will never show very accurate results and they are good enough for getting a general idea of your health.

Menstruation cycle tracking is also available, which can help women track their cycle duration, ovulation, and also predict when their next cycle will happen. You will be required to enter details for the same if you want to get reminders before the next cycle. However, there were times when the watch didn’t send reminders. You also get to see a month-view calendar in the ‘Da Fit’ app.

The smartwatch can offer detailed data on your sleeping patterns, which is also accurate. The app gives a sleep quality score as well as heart rate readings. You will find all the health and activity data in the company’s ‘Da Fit’ app, which displays these details quite well. You can even control your smartphone’s camera from the watch.

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Now, let’s talk about the key feature of the watch, which is the call function.Unlike some of the budget wearables, the Fire Boltt Talk allows you to pick up calls with just one tap. The watch should be within Bluetooth range of the smartphone and you don’t need to take your phone out to answer any call while riding a car or anywhere else. The smartwatch has a microphone and speaker for this, which is loud enough and clear. During our usage period, the person on the other end of the call was able to hear me clearly and had no issues hearing me. But, one should avoid talking via the watch in a noisy environment.

The watch also plays the smartphone’s audio when listening to songs or scrolling through apps like Instagram. You can change that from the smartphone’s Bluetooth settings by just disabling the “Audio Media” option. The watch lets you dial a phone number and even allows you to see contacts, but you will be able to make calls only via your phone.

Fire Boltt Talk review: What’s not good?

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The Fire Boltt Talk can monitor Blood Pressure (BP) too, but users are advised to measure it with a medical-grade device. I compared the watch’s result with a proper BP monitoring machine and the data offered by Fire Boltt Talk was not correct.

The Fire Boltt Talk won’t last long enough if your usage is medium to heavy. If you are using the watch for sports tracking, heart rate, SpO2, sleep tracking, steps, and notification alerts, then you will get less than two days of battery life. If your usage is less than that, then the device will remain alive for up to three days. I kept the “Quick View” option off to save some battery.

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The ‘Da Fit’ app has an option to set ‘Drink Water’ reminders, but this doesn’t even work. The same is also the case with alarms. The company can maybe fix this issue with a software update. While you can control music, the watch doesn’t display the name of the song or the artist.

Finally, there is no GPS support, so the distance tracking will not be very precise.

Fire Boltt Talk: Should you buy it?

The Fire Boltt Talk is a good smartwatch and serves its purpose. One can pick up calls and talk to anyone without pulling out the phone. It supports the ability to check notifications, heart rate, sleeping patterns, and control music. The smartwatch is IP67 rated and can handle water splashes.

The only major issue in my view would be the battery life. There are a few budget wearables that offer better battery life than Fire Boltt Talk so keep that in mind if you consider this as an option.

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