OnePlus Buds Review: “Cheap AirPods”

OnePlus Buds

The OnePlus Buds require a OnePlus phone if you want to get the most from them. So these really won’t appeal to owners of other Android devices. You won’t get features like wireless charging or noise cancellation at a price this low. The OnePlus Buds have strong battery life, decent sound, and a stable wireless connection. They’re available in white and gray in the US, with the divisive blue / green combo reserved for international markets.

The charging case looks like a squished, squatter version of the Pixel Buds case. OnePlus claims it worked for around 90 days to perfect the case’s matte texture. I like the end result, and matte always wins over glossy — especially in the dog days of summer. Take note, Samsung. (The earbuds themselves are glossy, however.) The Buds can reach up to seven hours of continuous battery life, and the case has enough juice to get you to around 30 hours of total listening time.

They lack wireless charging, but the OnePlus Buds do pack some frills despite the low price: they’re rated IPX4 water resistant, so they can withstand sweat and some splashes of water. They’ll automatically pause music when one earbud is removed, and they also support Android’s Fast Pair feature, which ties them to your Google account, shows battery levels for the buds and case, and lets you find a misplaced earbud by playing a sound. Unfortunately, you can’t use either of the earbuds standalone for audio or making calls, and they can only pair to one device at a time.

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