Wireless earbuds have been increasingly popular due to their portability, convenience and useful extra features. But in fact, most of them you see in online stores today are not fully cordless. This is because in order to create stereo sound through 2 separate earbuds, there is always a short cable, a neckband or a headband for a wired connection so the sound simultaneously emits to both sides. Discard all these parts, the completely wireless earbuds come in. You can easily figure out they are not just worth for music genres you love but for a lot of smart integrated features.
If you are intrigued by truly wireless earbuds, here are the top 5 you can order right now from their websites, including Earin, Dash, Kanoa, Samsung and Jabra. No cable, just two earpieces insert into your ears, once they fit right you will find how they actually excel. Considering feature, design, sound quality, fitting, noise isolation/sound leak, we’ve made the comparison chart for you.
Best Totally Wireless Earbuds
|Name/Picture||Size||Battery Life||Accessories||Additional Features|
|Small and light (rated 4.5/5)||6 hours||Foam eartips||Mic, transparency feature|
|Apple Airpods||4.5/5||Around 5 hours||Automatically connect Apple devices|
||4/5||3 hours||Eartips, earhook||Water-
|Samsung’s Gear IconX||4/5||3 hours 30 mintues||Eartips, Silicon jackets||Fitness tracking
Mp3 player (4GB)
|Jabra Elite Sport
|3.8/5||+4.5 hours||Eartips, Silicon jackets||Fitness tracking,
Water resistant IP 67, Transparency
Apple finally released their first Bluetooth earbuds, the Airpods, in December last year. With their own designed chip W1, the earbuds will make a break-through about the Bluetooth audio and connection, according to the company announced at the Iphone 7 launch event. The Bluetooth is reliable and strong with working range up to 50 feet. The built-in infrared and accelerometer sensors will detect when the headset is worn and touched, to either automatically play or navigate tracks.
The Airpods are not integrated with fitness tracking feature, and at $159 they are fairly cheaper than other competitors.
To race with plenty of startups that have released or announced their totally wireless in ear headphones, recently Samsung has unveiled their latest wearable in ear, the Gear iconX, and it will retail for $200. It is totally cordless and Bluetooth.
The Gear IconX wireless earbuds are dust and water resistant, and have features previously seen from other wireless models. For example, built with touch control and internal storage, the Gear Iconx is a tiny Mp3 player that fits perfectly into your ears like the Dash. By silicon jacket with ear hooks and ear tips, they offer sporty selections for your workout. This feature is also found in Kanoa.
The battery seems to be the biggest issue, when it can play for more than an hour and 30 minutes when pairing and streaming music from your phone, or more than 3.5 hours when it playes as Mp3 player (4 GB of internal storage). Actually, it is shorter and varied depending how you use the earphones. However, when not in use, you can but them back in a portable charger, which provides two fully charges.
According the announcement, 2 earbuds are independent. That means your phone will connect to 2 earbuds–separate devices, the stereo audio they deliver is quite impressive witth crisp bass and clear sound and if they play music from internal storage, you should store the music on both earbuds, if not you just get mono sound from one side.
The Gear IconX focuses on fitness, so they are very comfortable and lightweight. They are also easy to fit and lock in place with high sound isolation capacity. Note that the GearX has transparency feature, once you turn this mode on, this allows to hear the ambient sound and vent the bass–if you feel the sound a lot of bass.
To track your fitness like heart rate, distance traveled, calories burned, Samsung built sensors in the GearX, and the data is synced directly to Samsung’s S Health app. These features are only available for Android users.
Track navigation and volume adjustment are done by tapping on the R-earbud
We will cover this product (sound quality) when they are released on the market–latter this year with three different colors, white, blue, and black.
- Comfortable and secure fit
- Stable Bluetooth connection with good range
- One side can play music from internal storage without pairing.
- Short battery life
- Fitness tracking doesn’t work with iOS devices
Jabra Elite Sport Wireless
Along with Samsung (Gear IconX) and Motorola (Verve One), Jabra has joined the totally wireless earbud competion with Elite Sport. The earbuds come with compact size in a sport-focus, rugged design. It features water resistance (IP67), slicon jacket with wings for secure fit.
Built with sensors, the Elite sports can track your performance like VO2 Max and HR by Jabra Life App. The app features an equalizer to let use customize the sound to their preferences. The real-time coaching feature from the app also gives suggesttions based on the measured fitness information, which tells you whether to slow down or speed up.
The earbuds can be used a headset with great call quality as the company promised, there are two microphones on earch earbud, one for capturing your voice and the other for filtering surrounding sounds.
Recently Jabra upgraded the battery of Elite Sport that will last 4.5 hours compared to 3 hours previously.
The $249 wireless earbuds will be available exclusively on Best Buy on 30 October.
Bragi was among the first startups to release the true wireless earbuds, and their Dash earbuds aren’t perfect. They are built-in with a lot of smart features such HRM, Transparency but these features didn’t work as promised despite their attempts to update the firmware. Bragi’s recent release, The Headphone is a fix but they focus on music listening experience rather than being smart. Unfortunately their sound didn’t best the competitors. Overall it just sounds good with rich bass and the trebles is not that clear and very plesant to listen to.
You can take calls, navigate tracks and control volumes with buttons on the right earbud. The call quality is good but it still presents hiccups sometimes.
Based on my research, there are at least 17 different companies that make totally wireless earbuds, including big names like Apple (Airpods), Samsung and Motorola. Meanwhile, here are other pairs you would be interested in.
This is another product that features a charging case, omnidirectional mic, and superior sound. The earbuds are only 4 grams, fitting snugly in the ear and are almost undetectable to others.
If you have heard some of best wired earbuds under $100, Erato Apollo 7 are very close in terms of sound quality. They offer solid bass, clear treble and overall balance sounding profile.
They fit comfortably to most ear shapes and with one button control, it is simple to navigate tracks and adjust the volumes. They also have solid Bluetooth connection over long range up to 10 meters.
While Apollo 7 earbuds have a great built quality, they are very expensive compared to other sets such as Airpods or The Dash Headphones and their headset function isn’t as good as others.
Earin offers a truly engaging wire-free listening experience, but it does come at a premium price. The Earin has a simplistic design with the two ultracompact earbuds, which are well built and light weight. The Earin earbuds fits comfortably and snugly in the ears as it uses Comply foam tips, which also provides a high level of noise isolation. The included stabilizers–wing tips provide extra secure fit for your workout.
Setting up Earin is surprisingly easy, and there are even no buttons that may confuse you. As soon as they are fully charged and are out of the tube, they are about to enter pairing mode, and you can instantly pair them in your phone’s Bluetooth settings.
Aiming to keep the size of earbuds as small as possible, the Earin wireless earbuds can only host tiny battery, which has a playtime varied between 2.5 and 3 hours on a single charge. When not in use, the earbuds are stored in a carrying case, which also work as a charger, giving earbuds 3 triple battery times.
In terms of sound quality, powered by balanced armature drivers the Earin sounds accurately crossing over all ranges, tuning the tight and clean sound with an enjoyable transient response. Bass boost is also another notable highlight of the Earin earbuds. The Earin earbuds are no simplistic gimmick, but a genuine breakthrough in wireless technology, and a great-sounding one at that.
- Smallest and lightest
- Rich, full sound
- Easy and simple to use
- Impressive sound quality for a truly wireless in ear headphones
- Though they include the charging case, which enable you to re-charge the earbuds on the go, the Earin’s battery can last just more than 2 hours.
- Connection drops when you stuff your host phone in pan pocket
- No controls or mic for calls
- Balance shifts sometimes from one side to the other
Bragi Dash is one of the most ambitious wireless earbuds available on the market. It is an independent 4GB media player, a fitness tracker with a step counter and heart rate monitor, and also great earbuds with decent sound quality, so it can play music without connecting to any devices. While there is clearly an inclination towards active people, features like audio transparency and swipe/touch controls are quite refreshing and will appeal to anyone willing to fork out the $300 average cost.
The Bragi Dash sits comfortably and snugly in your ears. Even when running, there is no risk of these earbuds falling off. An interesting feature is that if you want to change a song, you just tap twice on the right earbud while tapping the left earbud shows your running process. There are several silicon skins included to accommodate a broad range of ear sizes.
Bragi Dash also comes with a transparency feature that should come in handy for runners. Normally, when you are using your earphones, the very last thing you would want is also to hear the external environment sounds. However, for runners, it is important to be aware of one’s surroundings, and that is what the Bragi Dash provides through the transparency feature – feeding ambient noise through the microphones to your ears.
The only weakest link of the Bragi Dash is its fitness tracking feature as it can only track running. The only measurements you get are heart rate, total steps and period of a workout. Nevertheless, support swimming (it’s waterproof) and cycling are soon going to be added on through an update.
Lastly, the Dash can work as a Bluetooth headset but it don’t offer a good call quality.
- Stellar noise isolation
- Touch controls
- Fitness tracking
- Integrated 4Gb-MP3 players, which can hold up 1000 songs
- Great build quality
- Fitness features require expanding
- Bluetooth connection problems outdoors.
- Mediocre sound–lacking in clarity
PRE-ORDER NOW! Final Batch (ships Spring 2017)
Kanoa wireless earbuds look quite sturdy, but they are lightweight and easy to fit. The bigger size of Kanoa earphones also means that they can fit larger batteries, with a playtime varied between 4 and 6 hours as Kanoa claims.
The Kanoa offers excellent water-resistant feature. Aside from extra silicone jackets to enhance the look of the earbuds and make them suitable for sports, comply foam ear tips have been used in the Kanoa as well to provide a more relaxing experience.
Charging is also done through a portable carrying case that has a rectangular shape and is pocket-friendly. The case can recharge two earbuds five full charges.
The unique pentagon shape of the Kanoa earbuds ensures that they fit well into your ears. Sound quality is exceptional, and you can crisply hear each instrument and each subtle effect. For in ear headphones that solely rely on Bluetooth (you probably heard the sound of the latest released Jaybird X3–balanced sounding profile or Beats Powerbeats2-enhanced bass sound signature), the Kanoa sounds impressive. Also, with an introductory price of $159 until August 2016, Kanoa is much cheaper option than wireless models out there.
- Secure fit due to its unique pentagon design
- Water resistant
- Decent battery life
- Not enough bass compared to other models like Earin
Bragi announced their second gen of the Dash, The Headphone with the pre-order price $140. Check out this post to find out which features have been cut and improved from the Dash.
“Wireless Earbuds Now Are Not Just Cable-Free But Getting More Sophisticated”
As you probably know audio makers have struggled to figure out the way that make the sound by Bluetooth get better. One of innovations was Aptx, which has been used for years, but supposedly it needs to be improved. The Hearnotes innovatively utilizes Kleer technology, which is believed to deliver loss-less sound with outstanding details as HearNotes promises
Hearnotes is based an innovative audio project aimed at developing earphones that are truly “wirefree.” These ground-breaking earbuds are hooked over your ears, with no wire connections between the two earphones with the hangers worn around the ear will keep the earbuds stay securely. The Baton transmitter is then plugged into your device of choice to transmit sound directly to the earbuds. Also, you also get a wireless portable charging base that you can easily carry around in your bag and recharge your earphones on the go.
The Hearnotes run on a unique system known as KLEER Technology, which gives it several advantages over other conventional wireless earphones. This new technology is expected to boost sound quality and lengthen battery life. The range of transmission with Hearnotes is also better than other wireless earbuds that get disconnected immediately when you move out of range.
- Premium sound through KLEER Technology
- Longer range of transmission
- Sleek look
The latest wireless earbuds of Earin, the M-2 were introduced at CES 2017. The Swedish company claimed this is lighter and smaller than any other truly wireless earbuds available. The M-2 has built-in mic for calls and touch control for track navigation and taking calls.
The first model of company encountered some problems related to connectivity. To solve this, Earin has utilized the Dual antenna and near-field magnetic induction (NFMI) for solid connection to any Bluetooth devices the M-2 connects to.
The M-2 are set to deliver in March, yet no specific date and price were indicated by the company.
FreeWavz incorporates a lot of useful features, including active noise cancellation, tracking your performance and voice guide. For sound, you can change the frequency response to match your taste of sound.
Forget about buying a fitness tracking device or a smartwatch to track your stats as you work out. Rather, just get the FreeWavz wireless earbuds will keep track of your workout while you listen to some motivating music. Also, the design of the FreeWavz-over the ear makes it comfy to wear, and it should be able to withstand tough workouts.
The stats that FreeWavz can monitor include the steps taken, average speed, distance covered, duration, calories and heart rate among others. These stats are generated in real-time and delivered to your connected device through its app to allow to customize and enhance your overall fitness experience.
There is also the Heads Up feature that allows FreeWavz to be used a voice command prompt so that you can schedule meetings, check calendars and so much more – all through the earbuds. Also, these earbuds are sweat resistant and water resistant as they are entirely sealed inside a snug, soft rubber.
The FreeWavz wireless earbuds have longest battery life.
- Long battery life
- Great fitness features
- Easy to use
- Quite large and bulky compared to other models in this list
- The extra features reduce playtime significantly
Some Drawbacks of Wireless Earbuds
It is worth noting that the sound quality of these models is not comparable to their wired companions, and their battery is required to recharge regularly. That’s all sort of things may pop up in my mind when I look to buy Bluetooth earbuds. Though wireless in ear headphones are built with a lot of practical features, here are top five big challenges any audio makers will meet and try to fix when they design their wireless earbuds.
Short battery life: As you can see small and compact size mean wireless earbuds are not able to incorporate a better battery, making them have lower capacity. This can be simply solved by portable charging case, which gives earbuds a full of juice once they are stored. Or in the future, earbud companies can make a longer lasting battery.
Easily to get lost if they fall out: If you wear those devices in public transportation, and accidentally one of your earbuds fall out in a crowd, the chance that someone will step on it, or hiding in a place that you won’t be able to plot them. If they are not drop proof, the incident may cause the drivers breaking
Sound quality: wireless audio seems not attract too much to audiophiles. The big issue with those wireless earbuds is sound quality, and most of them sound mediocre. They sound lack of details and the frequency response is not as full as wire earbuds.
Connectivity issues: Supported by Bluetooth®3.0 and 4.0–Bluetooth receiver, these earbuds have no problem with compatibility, but one of the major problem is that not only does your phone have to connect them separately but 2 earbuds have to sync with each other. So they may not sustain the connection stability, the audio lagged or connection drops are common issues. This happened to the VerveOnes–the latest completely wireless earbuds of Motorola.
Apps: You can monitor your activities, including heart rate, steps by companion apps synced with The Dash wireless, which is integrated bio-sensors. However, these information obtained is not always accurate.
Which pair of wireless earbuds will be right for you and going to be the next revolution in wearables? they replace the wrist band, phones and earbuds, accumulating everything you need for your workout in a single in ear device. Here are top 4 things they may have in the future:
- Hearing Aid: IQbuds has been making the product.
- Sound customization by app, adjusting frequency response.
- Real-time translation: The Pilot earbud is in development stage, but it is a single earpiece.
- Feature from connect app that can locate the earbuds on Google Map if they get lost
- Integrated optical sensors to monitor sugar levels in blood.
- Thermal sensors to track body temperature
It is possible that they will overcome the connectivity problem like Bluetooth connection cutting out and pairing complication. For the sound quality do they sound better than Bluetooth earbuds or behind the neck Bluetooth headphones? Personally, I think my wearable’s battery life should be more than 4 hours.
Check out this post to see how did we pick? Which wireless earbuds above are worth buying please leave your comment below!
For under $100 you can get some really good earbuds.
Updated on 04/16/2017