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Lifewire / Rebecca Isaacs
Sleek, ultrathin design
Long battery life
No dedicated voice assistant button
Thanks to a sleek design and comfortable ear wrap piece, the Jabra Talk 25 is a great way to talk for up to eight hours hands-free.
If you’re frequently on the phone at home or the office, a Bluetooth headset like the Jabra Talk 25 can be invaluable. The Talk 25 boasts up to 8 hours of talk time and up to 10 days of standby time, which was more than enough to match my home office needs. To test this Bluetooth headset, I evaluated performance, battery life, comfort, and design. Read on to see how it fared.
Most Bluetooth headsets on the market all have similar qualities: they’re sleek, compact, and black. The Jabra Talk 25 doesn’t change the design drastically, it’s a sleek, compact earpiece made of black polycarbonate, at 4.2 x 1.3 x 6.9 inches (LWH). The design is nice because it isn’t blatantly visible or obvious in your ear. Overall, it looks quite professional and suitable for a work environment.
Unlike other Bluetooth headsets I’ve tried, the Jabra Talk 25 is really, really tiny. Its color can make it hard to spot if you set it down and forget where you put it. In this particular device’s case, I lost it for three days before I stumbled across it again—and this incident wasn’t an isolated event. More on that below.
With its ear hook, the Talk 25 is comfortable on the ear, even after 6+ hours of wear. However, the concern is that on my ear, the hook is loose, and as I moved my head throughout the day, I could feel the headset bounce.
Normally, I wouldn’t have worried about this loose fit, but it fell off my ear twice during 25 hours of testing, which is two times too many for my preference. If you’re on the go, you may not even realize that it fell off until your phone announces that it’s disconnected. With a Bluetooth range of up to 10 meters or 33 feet, that’s too risky, even for a device that’s budget-friendly.
Thankfully, the Jabra Talk 25 arrives pre-charged at 50 percent. It’s recommended that you charge it until the battery is full. If you have some time to spare, it only takes one hour to complete the initial charge, and then you can connect the headset to your phone. Be sure to turn both the phone and the Bluetooth device on. From there, you’ll have to locate and pair the Jabra Talk 25 in your phone’s Bluetooth settings.
I tested the Jabra Talk 25 with my Samsung Galaxy S10 and when I took my first phone call, the audio blasted through my ear thanks to 11M dynamic speakers. Sound quality was solid, lacking any serious instances of garbling or distortion. People on the receiving end of my phone calls could hear my voice in natural tones, without any background noise. With the manual volume adjustment buttons located on the top of the device, the audio can be altered to suit your needs. This feature differs from other models, some of which boast automatic volume adjustment.
One thing I did miss was a voice assistant button. While you can manually set it up on your Android or iPhone, there is no voice option that lets you open apps, start navigation, or play music. The only voice prompts you’ll get are for battery and connectivity. Granted, while this isn’t a big deal for regular headset usage, if you want a truly hands-free device, look elsewhere.
The Jabra Talk 25 also offers 33 feet worth of wireless range. To test in my three-story house, I left my phone on the third floor while I went down to my first-floor kitchen for a snack. It wasn’t until I was well into my kitchen that Jabra told me I was disconnected. Of course, more walls, doors, and other devices will add to interference.
The sound quality was solid, lacking any serious instances of garbling or distortion.
Jabra Talk boasts that the Talk 25’s lithium-ion battery can last up to 8 hours of talk time, with 10 days of standby time. When it came to simply talking on the device or connecting to a Zoom meeting, the battery life accurately reflected the available talk time.
However, one large setback is that there isn’t a button to press to check remaining talk time, unlike other models. While there is a button on the exterior that can disconnect the headset and put it into sleep mode, it doesn’t tell you the remaining talk time. To check battery life, you’ll have to check your phone or use the Jabra app.
When it comes to streaming media, the Jabra Talk 25 takes a heavy hit on the battery. This headset isn’t really meant for streaming though since you only have mono audio, but it can serve the purpose in a pinch.
The design is nice because it isn’t blatantly visible or obvious in your ear. Overall, it looks quite professional and suitable for a work environment.
Many Bluetooth headsets can be closer to the three-figure range, so the Jabra’s $40 price tag (usually less on Amazon) is a welcome addition to a saturated market. Granted, it doesn’t come with fancy features, like voice activation for Google or Siri, but if you need a plain Bluetooth headset, this is a great price point.
The Jabra family is, to put it mildly, extensive. If you don’t like one model of the Bluetooth headset, there’s a solid chance that another Jabra device will suit your needs just fine. In this vein of thinking, we tested the Jabra Talk 25 against a more expensive model: the Jabra Talk 45 (see on Amazon). The Jabra Talk 45 is a little bulkier, and unlike the sleek blackness of the Talk 25, the Talk 45 adds an orange ear insert, a silver stripe that doubles as a button, and a clear plastic ear wrap. Both have modern designs.
The Jabra Talk 45 comes with a dedicated Siri/Google button to press, but for $50 more, it definitely comes at a cost to the consumer. It also comes with a second built-in microphone that’s designed to reduce ambient noises and enhance voices in the conversation. It works almost too well, though—at one point, one of my dogs decided they wanted to be heard during the Zoom meeting, and my coworkers were greeted by Old English Sheepdog barking. Testing both didn’t show a huge difference in audio and voice quality, so it really depends on what you prefer when it comes to the other features.
Even the battery lives aren’t that different. While the Jabra Talk 25 has up to 8 hours for talking time, the Jabra Talk 45 only gets 6 hours of talking time battery life. It isn’t that big of a difference, but if you’re really on the phone most of your workday, the Talk 25 is your better choice.
A basic, affordable Bluetooth headset can meet basic needs.
While the Jabra Talk 25’s price tag doesn’t allow for super fancy options like a dedicated Siri/Google button, it’s a solid, basic Bluetooth headset. The battery life makes it a good choice for extensive daily use. Just be sure it’s as tight on your ear as possible.