Huawei explored the potential of improving the standalone capabilities of smartwatches with a design which incorporates removable earbuds above and below the screen.

The device featured in one of a number of filings Huawei made with the World Intellectual Property Organisation, titled Wearable Device Having Bluetooth Headset. Of course, this does not indicate a product is imminent.

In its filing, the vendor said the device solves “the problem of storage inconvenience when the wearable device in the prior art is used with a Bluetooth headset”. The earbuds would be stored in an enlarged watch housing.

With smartwatches becoming increasingly capable, having on-board earphones would improve the usability further. The two obvious use cases being for music playback and, as devices with integrated mobile connectivity become more widespread, for voice calls.

Huawei also has some history with multifunction wearables. Its Talkband fitness tracker doubled-up as a Bluetooth earpiece.