Sounds Good? Wireless headphones introduce new trend


Credit: Samantha Rosenstein

The AirPods sport a compact, unique design with a slim profile case.

The number of headphones and earbuds that were bought in 2017 was around 368 million globally, with that number nearing 400 million this past year. Now, the type of technology that manufacturers are focusing on is creating Bluetooth earbuds to replace the wires. They are at a point now where almost every major audio and tech company has tried to create their own version due to their rising popularity. Some of the following choices are the best in their class and have a wide variety of features.

Apple’s AirPods have likely been the catalyst behind the booming popularity of wireless earbuds in recent months, and certainly a solid option for those who want a reliable set of earbuds that are part of the Apple ecosystem. They feature the best and quickest pairing with an iPhone, and they are also lightweight. The carrying case is small and equipped with a charging feature.

Overall, AirPods are an easy choice for Apple users because of the things that characterize Apple overall – ease of use and a strong internal eco-system. However, given that AirPods are sold at $159, some argue they lack features that should accompany the price. AirPods do not sport a long battery life when compared to other brands, as they can only go for about2.5 hours on a charge. Some reviewers report that the sound could be better, and the level of comfortability is subpar. There are not many controls from the earbuds themselves, and any type of noise canceling is absent from them.

Another strong option whose price rivals AirPods is the Jabra Elite 65t. These wireless earbuds have a much more understated design, as they look and feel less flashy and bright. However, they do excel in all of the added features they possess. They feature a very respectable sound, especially given their small size. Additionally, they have different modes, like a wind noise reduction mode and another mode that lets the surrounding sound in, too. They are known to be great for voice calls, and when combined with a strong connection and very good battery life at about 4-5 hours on a single charge, they are a great overall package. Unfortunately, the pairing is not as swift as the AirPods, and it is $20 more to get a better water-resistant and sporty design for workouts, making them cost $179.

While wireless earbuds have certainly risen monumentally in popularity, many find the high price point and tendency to get lost frustrating. The OnePlus Bullets Wireless is an example of earbuds that, at $69, are relatively inexpensive, but have Bluetooth with a neckband design so that the earbuds can always stay on your neck and near you. They have a very fast charging system, great sound and fit, and an automatic on/off switch that activates after individuals connect the two buds together with magnetic backs.

In a world where more and more devices, namely smartphones, are leaving the headphone jack out of their devices, wireless headphones have become a practical option.