It’s the age of smart everything, our homes are smart, our phones are smart, our watches are smart, even our glasses are smart. Now you can get smart earbuds and smart headphones. The next question usually asked is, what makes them smart? They look like regular earbuds without a cord (also known as true wireless, another new tech term). So is that all that makes them smart, they are just true wireless bluetooth earbuds? Nope, not at all! While they can’t unlock your front door or cook you breakfast they can change the way you hear!
Like all earbuds they play music, and usually play it better than most headphones and earbuds it’s all the other stuff they can do that makes them smart. Depending on the manufacturer and earbud or headset type some core features they offer are:
All smart earbuds and headphones come with smartphone apps for IOS and Android. The apps allow for syncing with the smartphone for listening to music and phone calls but also offer full control over the earbuds and custom settings.
Smart earbuds or headphones will not only allow you to listen to music (usually at a better quality than most headsets), they will also allow you to take calls with a built-in mic, offer voice control via Siri or Google Assistant and more.
The audio is usually improved over standard earbuds and headphones because they offer noise cancelling technology that improves the quality of what you are hearing by blocking out loud sounds around you making phone conversations, music and, in some cases, in-person conversations crystal clear.
An amazing feature that most don’t know exists. So amazing there really isn’t even a term for it. Some call it Blended some call it Layered and manufacturers have their own fancy names like ListenThrough but what it does is it allows you to blend outside sounds with your call or music and you can control the ratio. Think of the advantage and use cases for such technology, such as when you are walking or running with traffic around, working in the office and need to listen for co-workers or the phone or your boss, or travelling and need to hear announcements.
Augmented hearing, another new technology term refers to the headset adjusting the sound specifically for your hearing needs, whether you hear just fine or have some level of hearing loss. It will adjust music, phone calls and amplify in-person conversations. Combine with this the noise cancelling technology and you can suddenly hear those conversations in crowded and noisy situations clearly without yelling!
A smart earbud or headset wouldn’t be very smart if it can’t keep up with your lifestyle so most are waterproof or at the least sweatproof. They usually have the latest battery technology because of the earbud size the batteries can’t be overly large. Most do offer rapid charging and Nuheara’s IQBuds carry cases can charge your earbuds while on the go without needing a plug. Headsets, like Alango’s BeHear Now have a neck strap and offer larger batteries with all day power.
Think of the uses, even if you aren’t a jogger or walker. The ability to hear the world around you while you work, walk or travel has serious advantages. Enjoy music in the office without isolating yourself from work conversations, or missing phone calls or the startle of a co-worker, or worse yet your boss all of a sudden being behind you. Or perhaps you want to listen to music while you travel but you can’t afford to miss the boarding call for your flight or train. Maybe you commute daily and need to hear for your train or bus. How about the noise cancelling function to block out the noise of a commute on public transit or while you work away in a busy coffee shop. Or perhaps you love to be outdoors running or walking but you need to hear the traffic around you.
If you have any difficulty hearing then some models also help you with increasing the volume of conversations on the phone or in person and helps to block out background noise in restaurants, meetings, open offices and all other noisy situations you might struggle to make out every work said.
Those that own them learn it’s hard to live without these conveniences!
Now that you have read how amazing they are the next question is how much are they? Smart earbuds and headphones offer you an amazing selection of hearing enhancing technologies that offer you many conveniences, but these conveniences do come at a price. Price ranges typically start at $399 and can get as high as $699 but if you compare top level Bose true wireless earbuds are in the $300 range it does justify the increased price for all these additional features over and above top level true wireless earbuds.