It will likely come as no surprise that Samsung has unveiled the Galaxy Buds Live at its Unpacked 2020 event. These new wireless earbuds arrived alongside the Galaxy Note 20, Galaxy Tab S7 and more.
Samsung has been in the wireless earbud game longer than most with the Gear IconX line launching back in 2016. The Galaxy Buds and Buds+ have been impressive, but the Buds Live are one of the most unusual pairs we’ve seen.
How much do the Galaxy Buds Live cost?
They come in a little bit more than the Buds+ at £179, or in North America, you can buy them for US$169.
When is the Galaxy Buds Live release date?
The Galaxy Buds Live went on sale almost straight away in the US on 6 August.
They are now available in the UK as of 21 August.
You can buy them at Samsung as well as retailers including Amazon, John Lewis, Currys and Argos.
What are the Samsung Galaxy Buds Live?
Considering the Jelly Bean shape, you’re probably wondering how the Galaxy Buds Live work.
Well, Samsung says they don’t protrude from your ears like other wireless earbuds, although without any kind of ear-tip we’ll have to wait until we get a review sample to see how well they stay in place.
Samsung says “they’re like nothing you’ve seen or worn before.”
The idea is that the lower part sits directly inside the ear canal, while the remainder fills the upper part of the ear. With so many different ear sizes and shapes out there, it seems like a risky design, especially when we had so much trouble with even the more traditionally shaped Pixel Buds.
Despite the open design, the Galaxy Buds Live come with active noise cancelling (ANC) like the AirPods Pro.
This is the first time Samsung has offered the technology on earbuds. It aims to cut out noise around you like traffic or the hum of air conditioning. However, we didn’t find the combination of ANC and an open design very effective on the Huawei’s Freebuds 3 so hopefully, Samsung has figured out a better system.
The firm says it’s the best of both worlds so you can “get lost in an audiobook without missing the train conductor’s announcement.”
To help with the ANC, each earbud has no less than three microphones along with a Voice Pickup Unit. If you’re getting a Galaxy Note 20 then wearing the Buds Live while shooting video on the phone will supposedly help reduce background noise thanks to the additional microphones.
There is, of course, a charging case in which to store the Buds Live and top their batteries up. The case itself supports wireless charging and you can get the headphones in three different colours: Mystic White, Mystic Bronze (shown) and Mystic Black.
The Buds Live have touch controls on the outside for controlling playback, calls and ANC. There’s also hands-free always-on Bixby support so you can summon the digital assistant whenever you need to.
Samsung touts eight hours of battery life from the earbuds and a further 21 from the charging case. There’s very basic water resistance at just IPX2.
Here’s a full spec list of the Galaxy Buds Live:
- 12mm drivers
- Bass duct
- AKG sound
- Active Noise Cancelling
- Three microphones per bud
- Voice Pickup Unit
- Touch controls
- Hands-free Bixby voice control
- Charging case with wireless charging
- 8 hours battery life – earbuds
- 21 hours battery life – charging case
- Quick charging – 1 hour playback in 5 minutes
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