Pre-Review: Motorola MOTOROKR S9-HD A2DP Stereo Bluetooth Headset for iPhone 3.0

Come this “summer”, iPhone 3.0 — see our walkthrough — will allow iPhone users to enjoy new Bluetooth functionalityincluding stereo headsets, both the A2DP audio and ARCP control protocols. And if you're a developer, you likely have this functionality already for testing purposes.

A while back I took a preview look at the Motorola S9 Stereo Bluetooth Headset for iPhone 3.0. Looks like they've gone and grown up! If budget is less of a concern to you than sound, and you want to enjoy your audio on the go, the Motorola MOTOROKR S9-HD (the "-HD" being the key -- and really only -- differentiator here!) are something you definitely want to consider (available now from our sibling store at WMExperts).

Note: This pre-review will not be focusing on iPhone 3.0 functionality, which is currently in closed beta. It will concentrate only on the headset itself. However, for those developers needing an A2DP headset for testing 3.0, it’s our understanding this one works well on multiple units, over multiple carriers.

About that -HD

I'm not going to bore you with a re-hash review. This headset, as mentioned above, is almost identical to the non-HD version reviewed previously. The big difference, of course, is the "-HD" itself, and that's what we'll focus on here. Starting with: how big a difference is it?

BIG. The bass is bigger, the emersion experience is better, the depth and scope of the sound in general is brighter. They call it SRS WOW HD technology. Given that A2DP will never equal great wired earphones, and great wired earphones will never equal vinyl and vinyl will never equal great live music, as far as stereo Bluetooth headsets go, these S9-HD certainly nail the WOW.

Addendum: In the previous review, one of the commenters asked about glasses. I wear glasses, and while all glasses will vary in size and form factor, I had no problem wearing the S9-HD for long p


The same sizing and form factor issues plague this headset as did it's non-HD sibling. If your head doesn't fall into the comfortable rang, and you want to be able to lie on your back while listening, these aren't the headset for you. Likewise, if you value price over performance, look at those non-HD siblings. If you want this form factor and sound quality matters to you, these are top of the charts -- easily.


  • Great sound
  • Good battery life
  • Light and comfortable
  • Well suited for on-the-go use.


  • May not fit all head sizes
  • Not well-suited for lying down

TiPb Accessory Pre-Review Rating

4.5 star rating

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Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.