AirPods are everywhere. You see people using them at airports, cafés, co-working spaces, video meetings, and so on. Ever since Apple released its first AirPods in 2016, they have become a part of the popular culture. However, they are now seen as a fashion accessory more than a need.
Their popularity is so high that Apple’s AirPods were the bestselling truly wireless earbuds in India in 2019, according to a report from Counterpoint research. Apple claimed 27 percent of the truly wireless hearables segment in India last year. But for many, the price of AirPods – which touches Rs 15,000 in India – does not go well with the pockets. We bring you six Apple AirPods alternatives in the truly wireless earbuds market in the range of Rs 900 to Rs 10,000.
Realme’s Buds Air seems to be the new favourite. Buds Air also stood on number two after Apple’s Airpods in the Counterpoint research report on the bestselling wireless earbuds in 2019.
Available for Rs 3,999, Buds Air are much cheaper than Apple’s wireless options, and come in different colour options other than white, including black and yellow. At this price, Buds Air does not compromise on features. The earbuds come with Bluetooth 5.0, dual mic for calling, the new R1 chipset, and of course, a wireless charging case.
With the Buds Air, Realme joins the club of brands that are increasingly emphasising on getting bigger in the market for truly wireless earbuds. The design of the Buds Air is also similar to Apple’s AirPods so it will not look unfamiliar to the users, plus they don’t drain the pocket.
Xiaomi AirDots S
Amid the coronavirus pandemic, Xiaomi recently launched a new pair of its wireless earphones under the Redmi brand, called Redmi Airdots S. Priced at Yuan 100 (approximately Rs 1,100), they are currently available in the sole Black colour option on the company’s website.
Though it is not clear what their price in India would be, we can expect Redmi to suit our pockets. Key features of the product include Bluetooth 5.0 support, 7.2mm drivers, IPX4 water resistance rating, and they weigh 4.1 grams. The Redmi Airdots S comes with support for smart voice assistants like Google Assistant and Siri. The company claims that the earbuds individually have a battery life of four hours on a single charge. And the charging case holds an additional charge of up to 12 hours, thus giving users a combined battery life of around 16 hours.
JBL Tune 120TWS
JBL is one of the most widely-trusted brands for audio products. JBL Tune 120TWS Truly Wireless in-ear headphones are available for Rs 6,499. JBL promises 16 hours of playtime and claims to give one hour of playback with just 15 minutes of charge.
JBL Tune 120TWS sports 5.8mm driver featuring JBL Pure Bass sound. Ergonomically shaped, the earbuds are equipped with handy controls on each earpiece. They come with Siri and Google Now integrations. The ear pods are available in beautiful pastel colours, including white, pink, and yellow.
Samsung Galaxy Buds
When it comes to wireless earbuds, battery life is a big deal. And Samsung tops the list in terms of battery life. Samsung Galaxy Buds – the predecessor of Galaxy Buds+ (Rs 13,999) – costs just under Rs 10,000 and promises at least six hours of battery life. The earbuds come with wireless charging and are lightweight, offering a comfortable fit.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds come in a small, wireless charging box. The Gear app for the Buds lets you control how you use the Buds, such as equalisers and settings – as what needs to happen on a tap or double-tap. The app also provides ‘Find your Buds’ options, because we all know we are capable of misplacing small things. The Buds work with any smartphone and are not limited to just Samsung.
They could be a good option at Rs 10,000 if you do not want to spend more than that on your earbuds.
Noise Shots X-Buds
Noise Shots X-Buds Truly Wireless in-ear headphones are priced at Rs 3,799. It supports Bluetooth 5.0 and promises 16 hours of playtime, and come with a charging case. The earphones also support Voice Assistant and are rated IPX5 for waterproofing.
Sporting a dedicated app, USB Type-C charging, and touch controls, the Noise Shots X-Buds seem solid and value-for-money purchase. In terms of battery, the Noise Shots X-Buds claims to last four hours, and the charging case is capable of topping the earphones off an additional three times that duration. This gives it an overall battery life of sixteen hours, which is similar to the AirPods.
PTron BassBuds is another popular alternative to the famous AirPods. They come really cheap, with the variants of BassBuds available between Rs 900 and Rs 2,500. They are also listed as one of the bestselling audio pieces in 2019.
These earphones tick all the boxes in terms of specifications, such as Bluetooth v5.0 technology, and are capable of connecting in the range of 10 metres. These earbuds are lightweight – 3 grams per earpiece. All the functions of these wireless earphones can be controlled by a single control button- on/off, play/pause, next/previous song. The company claims 3.5 hours on a single charge, and 120 hours per full charge.
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