What are the Samsung Galaxy Buds Live?
The Galaxy Buds Live resemble Apple AirPods in more than just shape, in fact the Galaxy Buds’ seal around your ear does a fine job of blocking out noise, but it doesn’t do it all the way. The buds use magnetics to engage with the smartphone so you can make calls, receive calls, and control music playback through touch on the smartphone. The headphones are relatively large and heavier than Apple’s. They’re about 3.9 x 1.2 x 0.6 inches and 10.6 ounces. The earbuds fit easily and comfortably in the ear, but not into the canal as it turns out they’re not designed to do that. They fit in the outer-ear and, like most earbuds, tug on the earbud when in the ear.
Pros and Cons of the Samsung Galaxy Buds Live
Design The best part of the Galaxy Buds, and what ultimately draws people to them, is their design. The one thing that Samsung was able to make unique about its wireless earbuds, besides charging and wireless earphones, is the cover. The cover is completely black, and when folded up it essentially looks like a Galaxy smartphone. It can also be opened up to reveal a USB port for charging, and the microSD card slot that the new Galaxy smartphones include. I use these ports for my phone, and it is convenient to keep the earphones charged up during a longer session of listening. The Galaxy Buds come with a lot of extra wires, however. The wires run from the charging case to the earbuds themselves, and then along the outer part of the neck of the neckband to the other part of the neckband.
How do they compare to the AirPods?
Samsung and Apple have very different approaches to smartphone audio. While the AirPods feature wireless earbuds that connect directly to your smartphone, the Galaxy Buds Live can be connected to two devices at once, which allows you to listen to music or make phone calls through your phone and in-line remote control. The buds can be used while the Galaxy Buds Plus aren’t in use. However, neither device is wireless. Both sport wired adapters, but the AirPods don’t provide any type of wireless charging, and the Galaxy Buds Live don’t have the ability to adjust the sound volume. Now the Live has a microphone. We found the mics work pretty well for being so close to your mouth. That being said, the mics are on the outside of the buds, so they may occasionally pick up on other audio.
Comparisons with other wireless earbuds like Apple’s AirPods or the Bose Soundsport Free
On the surface, the Galaxy Buds Live seem to be an equal to the AirPods. The same external design, the same advanced microphones for call clarity, similar battery capacity. We tested the AirPods and the Bose with all the same device makers and testing gear and have come to the same conclusion. This being a first generation device with shortcomings, I’d suggest the two should be considered separate choices. The AirPods have a built-in rechargeable battery that can be topped off with the included lightning connector, or with any iPhone charging dock. The AirPods automatically connect to your device when plugged into a phone, but you can manually connect if you’d prefer.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds Live are priced very aggressively, considering what you get. Sure, the AirPods are a better offering than these earphones in most respects, but Samsung delivers quality in almost every area where it counts. Other features include several color options, real charging, and they are waterproof. These are real wireless earbuds. If you prefer Apple’s AirPods, or other true wireless earphones, consider the Samsung Galaxy Buds. For Apple users, there are two options to consider: the Samsung Galaxy Buds and Apple’s own AirPods.