With the elimination of 3.5mm port iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, Apple had to give way to the field of wireless headphones. It has done so with Airpods, some wireless headphones include incredible advances to improve the user experience but where the sound seems almost immaterial.
Cordless headphones: literally
We are accustomed to seeing quite different and futuristic designs on button-type and wireless headphones. The usual thing is to look for something very reduced in size and to go as unnoticed as possible. Apple has not chosen that path and watch the airPods is how to do it with a earpods but without the cable . It is just what they have removed, beyond the interior design to accommodate, as we shall see, enough elements, and that makes them slightly larger.
Without being anything bulky and much less heavy, inside the Airpods there from batteries enough autonomy to W1 chip or optical sensors and accelerometers to know when we wear and when not. And that this works is very important for the overall result and valuation of these headphones.
The aesthetics of the airpods is debatable for some, among which I find myself, but their design is effective. They are quite comfortable (no option to alter the size, are rigid, so this perception may vary depending on the person) and very light to take long positions and do not fall. This aspect is one of the most intriguing we raised, because at first glance are headsets candidates to do so. But it has been the opposite.
If you are thinking of going with them to jog or play sports, it is completely possible. They endure well the movement, never running in our tests we have fallen, and yet no longer transmit a strange feeling to be let go. But it does not happen.
If obvious the strangeness of its aesthetics, the AirPods only present a problem in design level: the fear to lose them when we do not take them
Seeing how well they perform for sports and the comfort of not carrying cables and as we will see later, control the phone with Siri in case of an iPhone, we miss the sport facet in the form of water resistance and splashes for these AirPods. Maybe an exclusive model for later? We have currently only available with PowerBeats 3.
Although it is not easy to end up falling on the ears without realizing its size if it seems that can be conducive to misplace in pockets or almost anywhere. That’s why they come with a case. Of her I speak next because it deserves a point of its own.
The best design idea: The cargo box
If the design of the Airpods I have my reservations, basically aesthetically not feel the same with the box / cover. Get used to taking it with you because the natural thing is that when you do not use the Airpods, return them to your bag.
In addition to being protected and complicate lose; the Airpods are recharged in the holster. It is an idea that seems very successful and at this time using Airpods has made us forget the battery despite being a battery powered headphones.
The Airpods case is small, lightweight and of excellent finish. It opens through a closure that does not seem to break loose by itself in normal situations and inside there is a gap for the two Airpods. It is not a generally hollow but perfectly adapted to the shape and size of the headphones, which are also fixed magnetically.
Each headset has its hole, so you may try to put the left in the right place more than once and vice versa. The same thing happens when you put them on, so some kind of visual identification beyond the classic R or L would have been appreciated.
Autonomy very correct, but it is the least
Once placed in the case, it becomes a portable charger. There is a battery status indicator LED for both headphones (when in place) and the case itself. This is loaded with a cord Lighting. A green LEZ indicates that either the headphones or the box, as appropriate, are charged.
The most accurate information about the remaining battery is reflected by Apple devices, separately for case and headphones.
The AirPods enjoy a very good autonomy, around 5 hours in our tests. But with the charging system in the case is really a wireless audio system with which you can completely ignore the battery
On autonomy, Apple explained in the Summary of the Airpods their new headphones are able to remain active for about five hours . In the days in which we hurry the same to verify, with a volume slightly above 50%, we always exceed those five hours that Apple points.
However, with Apple Airpods it was the only time I have not had to worry at all autonomy bluetooth headphones. At least in my routine use these days, have to keep them in its case and that with this gesture go recharging has made were always ready. Rarely will be the moment in which you release the autonomy that more than five hours. In any case Apple promises a fast charge time granted 3 hours 15 minutes of charging.
It remains to be seen if this continuous charge of the battery does not end up passing invoice to the useful life of the same or its effectiveness. As for the “autonomy” of the case, we did not have to load it until after the fourth day.
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Advanced pairing with Apple: correct with Android
An interesting feature of the Apple Airpods is found in the initial configuration and pairing. Simply place the box next to the iPhone, open it and we will have the headset connected. If you’re inside the Apple ecosystem on more devices, it’s still better. iCloud by the other teams in your account, either an iPad or a Mac, you will have the profile of those headphones and will issue a touch tell thereafter you want to use with that team.
Apple’s management of the pairing with its equipment is fantastic, and every time the optical sensors detect that we have put the two headphones (or one) are linked. We will hear a little sound to let us know. If there is a time when you do not have both headphones on, it’s no problem. It is enough that you put the second one so that, without interruptions, the system detects that it has been added and it starts to sound as well.
And how do Airpods pair with an Android smartphone? In case the sound and price convince you, you may want to buy some Airpods to use with your Android device. In that case the match is performed in the classic way, using in this case the earphone sleeve.
With them inside, open the lid and press a small button on the back to start the pairing. We have tested with different terminals (an Alcatel OneTouch Idol, a Xiaomi Mi5 and a Galaxy S6 Edge) and in all cases the Airpods have been well matched, like any other Bluetooth device, i.e. with some other problem and not working at first. Also, the detection of when we remove them to pause the music does not work.
Quite down in this analysis it has been paragraph in which I speak of the sound quality of Airpods. I think it’s more or less located where Apple has left the relevance of this aspect in the configuration of their headphones.
That the sound quality is only correct makes clear the user profile of these headphones: who does not seek excellence for listening but comfort, autonomy, integration and ease of use
If you come from Earpods of the own Apple, the result you get with these Airpods is similar but with more power. In general, reproduction is warm and very focused on the midtones. From the extremes, both high and low, Apple almost forgot, at least if we want to refer to these headphones as reference and level for listening audio. In any case, they comply properly for a generalist profile and where the other extras are enough to compensate.
Although noise cancellation, as we shall see, it works very well with Siri and calls, the Airpods are not exactly insulation. If you want to keep an eye on what is happening around you, they are ideal, but if you like me, you want to be more isolated when listening to music or multimedia content, even with a considerable volume you can recognize conversations around.
The connectivity range of these Bluetooth headsets is correct, about 20-30 meters indoors, in our case a couple of stays. From the user experience with multimedia tasks Airpods we really missed the volume control or power forward / backward in a playlist. Going to Siri can be worth it, but we wanted something more direct.
Siri and Microphones: The Best of Airpods
If I told you before by sound quality the Airpods are not headphones that blunt but fair with the price we pay for them (we refer to wireless models, not cable, where there are many models higher and cheaper), not so does the extra features including Apple.
Noise cancellation works perfectly in hands-free mode or when we talk to Siri. No matter the ambient noise, we can talk on the phone with total clarity
In addition to sensors that stop playing when we take off the headphones (not work on Android or any application under iOS or Mac, but most), we have the handsfree to answer calls but also to “call” To Siri. And it is by far what works best and most we liked these Airpods.
The noise canceling microphones are extremely effective and much to talk to Siri to answer or make calls behave perfectly. I was rather surprised how well Siri serves instructions even in noisy environments or other people talking.
To activate Siri it is enough to give two blows on the handset (it does not matter if it is the right one on the left). The sensor on the Airpods recognizes these touches practically every time. If we are not much use Siri, we can set those two taps to stop or put back on track playback active. If that gesture you want to do to attend someone who is talking to you, it is more natural and direct since you have to raise your hand, remove the handset with your hand and the music will stop.
Siri control with two touches on the headphones regardless of whether we are on a computer with Mac or iOS is very comfortable and one just getting used to using it so soon. Add reminders on iPhone, create alarms or check the weather on iPad, or on Mac open applications and control functions with voice. The sound of what we are reproducing stops to talk to Siri, and after the interaction, comes back automatically.