Nokia has done a good job in the past year of releasing a slew of attractive yet functional Bluetooth headsets to accompany its cell phone line. We especially liked the Nokia BH-800, which earned a spot in our list of top ten Bluetooth headsets. This year, Nokia has released its successor, the Nokia BH-801. It's just as small and compact, with a few design refinements when compared to its predecessor. The Nokia BH-801 is also quite affordable at $99.99, and you can get it at most Cingular/AT&T stores. To find more accessories like this, plus tips on how to use them, please check out our cell phone accessories help page.
Decked out in a soft silver finish with chrome accents, the Nokia BH-801 is definitely an attractive headset. Just a tad larger than the Nokia BH-800, the Nokia BH-801 is 1.89 inches long by 0.79 inch wide by 0.39 inch deep, and weighs around 0.38 ounce. It has a simple yet stylish rectangular design with curved corners and a nice soft-touch surface on the back. The BH-801's multifunction button is sloped slightly inward to fit the curvature of your fingertips, making it quite easy to press. It has a tiny power button on top, which we thought was a little too small--we had to use our fingernails in order to press it in. On the left spine is a volume rocker in the form of a toggle switch, which was surprisingly easy to use even when the headset was worn on the ear.
The back of the headset houses the in-ear style earbud and a slot for an optional ear loop if you want added security. The earbud has a nice rubberized cover for a snug fit in the ear. As a result, we didn't feel a need for the ear loop at all. If you do want to use it, the ear loop can be positioned to accommodate both left and right ears.
Features of the Nokia BH-801 are fairly standard. You can answer, end, and reject calls, last-number redial, mute calls, switch calls between the headset and the phone, and voice dial. You can also pair the headset with up to eight different phones, but you can only connect to one at a time. The Nokia BH-801 also comes with a handy metal neck strap, which you can hook the headset on so that it hangs around your neck like a necklace. There's also a belt clip if you wish to clip it to your belt or shirt. This way, you have easy access to the headset without having to wear it on your ear all the time.
We tested the Nokia BH-801 with the T-Mobile Sidekick 3 and the LG VX8700 and were able to pair the headset with the phones without any problems. Call quality was pretty good, and we could hear our callers loud and clear and vice versa. It did diminish quite a bit in windier environments, however, with callers reporting quite a bit of background noise and not hearing us very well. The Nokia BH-801 has a rated talk time of six hours and a rated standby time of seven days.