Bluetooth is a simple feature but its addition can dramatically improve the usability of a device. For a walkie talkie, Bluetooth alone, of course, can’t be viable given the limited range of the technology. However, pairing a walkie talkie with Bluetooth frees up your hands and makes things more convenient. Let’s look at some of the best Bluetooth walkie talkie devices, though there are not many options on the market.
Top Bluetooth Walkie Talkies
- Motorola Talkabout T800 Two-Way Radios
- Ridingtoo Wireless Walkie Talkie Kit RT1
- Cobra PR562BLT Walkie Talkies Pro Series
- Motorola MU350R
Popular Bluetooth Walkie Talkies Reviewed
1. Motorola Talkabout T800 Two-Way Radios
Motorola Talkabout T800 Two-Way Radios builds off its ease of connectivity and convenient systems to be one of the best available. An LED clearly shows the availability, and connectivity for Bluetooth. It’s not quite a conventional screen, but I do enjoy the interesting look that Motorola calls the “hidden display”.
Once you connect your smartphone via Bluetooth, the T800 transforms into a modem. It can be used to send messages, location, and some other data over radio frequencies to other T800 users. Basically, with Bluetooth in play, you can go beyond push to talk and enjoy more features with off-grid groups.
As for conventional walkie talkie stuff, the Motorola T800 can communicate via voice as far as 35 miles, and 20 miles for data. The radio keeps track of 11 weather channels including 7 NOAA channels and will sound a weather alert if necessary.
- Convenient Bluetooth connectivity
- Off-grid texting and data with Bluetooth
- Actual range substantially lower than claimed 35 miles
- Battery life could be better
2. Ridingtoo Wireless Walkie Talkie Kit RT1
Ridingtoo Wireless Walkie Talkie Kit RT1 is a wireless walkie talkie system aimed at the outdoors. It features a push to talk system on a watch-like interface, and a transmitter. Once you’ve connected your Bluetooth headset with the device, the push to talk button will open up communication channels to others in your group.
It has a battery life of up to eight hours and can work as an intercom system. There is no interference with wireless walkie talkie headset systems, and you can use your phone connected with the headset. Receiving calls and listening to music works seamlessly.
The contentious part here is range. Ridingtoo Wireless Walkie Talkie Kit RT1 has a range of a few hundred yards. Many would consider it a distance small enough to negate the need for a walkie talkie. However, it does have its uses in specific cases, like talking off-grid while bicycling.
- Convenient, quick to set up system
- Range can be very limited
3. Cobra PR562BLT Walkie Talkies Pro Series
Cobra PR562BLT Walkie Talkies Pro Series does not seek to enhance its functions with Bluetooth connectivity. The only purpose for Bluetooth here is convenience. Once you connect your headset with the walkie talkie, you can use it hands-free.
The walkie talkie has a wide range, with a claim of going as far as 28 miles. That distance may be unpracticable in real life, the actual range is underwhelming. A screen provides easy access to channel, frequency, and information. Cobra PR562BLT offers 2662 channel combinations and can listen to 10 NOAA weather channels.
Other features include IPX2 water resistance and a built-in LED flashlight.
- Easy Bluetooth connectivity
- Simple hands-free operation
- Controls aren’t ergonomic
- Underwhelming range
4. Motorola MU350R
Motorola MU350R is simple and straightforward with its Bluetooth adapter. Unlike the Motorola T800 that extends functions and needs an app, the MU350R uses Bluetooth to create a hands-free system.
Once connected via Bluetooth, you can remain an active listener to the communication on your channels. However, you will have press the PTT button to transmit. The walkie talkie also works with pairing a Bluetooth PTT button, so you can be truly hands-free while using the Motorola MU350R.
The walkie talkie can tune into 7 NOAA channels to keep you updated with weather conditions. It also includes a built-in flashlight, rechargeable batteries, and the option to use three AA batteries to keep power flowing. The claimed range of this walkie talkie is up to 35 miles, though the actual is substantially lower.
- Excellent battery life
- Good and durable construction
- The mic does a poor job of picking up audio
- Bluetooth connection can be unreliable
Bluetooth Walkie Talkie Buying Guide
Ease Of Pairing
Being able to easily pair your device with a Bluetooth headset has to be a critical factor. Jumping through hoops just to get an accessory working is no fun, and is better left off the bucket list!
Displays Are Better
A walkie talkie with a display can give clear indications for connecting and pairing with a Bluetooth device. It’s way better than staring at a tiny LED waiting for it to change color, or a weird, disembodied voice announcing its willingness to connect. Bluetooth walkie talkies, as with regular walkie talkies, are just more convenient over a screen where you can see Bluetooth headset walkie talkie mode.
Final Thought On Bluetooth And Walkie Talkies
Finding the best Bluetooth walkie talkie can be a tough job. It’s a rare combination, and often unnecessary. Keep in mind, that the range most companies claim is useful only under specific circumstances. In most cases, the actual range will be substantially lower.