Apple AirPods (2019) vs Samsung Galaxy Buds: which is best for you?

On the subject of smartphones, likelihood is you fall into one among two camps: followers of the Apple iPhone’s iOS working system or these devoted to the Android OS utilized by Samsung (amongst others).

Nonetheless, on the planet of true wi-fi earbuds, these distinctions aren’t fairly as clear, and also you might be contemplating shopping for a pair of Samsung Galaxy Buds, even in case you have an iPhone – and vice versa. 

The discharge of the Apple AirPods (2019) earlier this 12 months, which include an non-obligatory wi-fi charging case, makes it much more tough to decide on which is the greatest true wi-fi earbud mannequin for you – and that is with out even contemplating Apple’s most up-to-date buds, the Apple AirPods Professional. 

There are additionally some new Samsung true wi-fi earbuds available on the market; the Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus  include an even bigger battery life than their predecessors, however do not sport lively noise cancellation just like the AirPods Professional.

If you happen to’re undecided how to decide on between the Apple AirPods (2019) and the Samsung Galaxy Buds, you’ve come to the fitting place; we have examined the professionals and cons of each true wi-fi earbuds that can assist you resolve which of them will swimsuit you greatest.

apple airpods vs samsung galaxy buds

The Apple AirPods (2019) (Picture credit score: TechRadar)

Apple AirPods (2019) vs Samsung Galaxy Buds: overview

There’s no denying that the unique Apple AirPods paved the best way for true wi-fi earbuds to develop into mainstream, and regardless of being launched in 2016, they have been nonetheless among the many greatest true wi-fi buds you possibly can purchase in 2019 – that’s, till the brand new AirPods (2019) got here alongside. 

Apple says that the up to date buds supply “sooner join occasions, extra discuss time, and the comfort of hands-free Siri.” It is debatable how a lot has truly modified for the reason that originals have been launched, they usually actually aren’t the rumored AirPods 2 we have been hoping for – we’re not anticipated them to be launched till no less than 2020 now. 

The Samsung Galaxy Buds however have been launched in February, and as such, usually are not fairly a ubiquitous because the AirPods. Nonetheless, they signify a size-able enchancment from Samsung’s earlier true wi-fi buds, the Gear IconX.

Launched alongside the brand new Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10 Plus and Galaxy S10e, the Galaxy Buds are optimized to work with these handsets, very like the Apple AirPods (2019) are optimized for iPhone, linking strongly to devoted Siri or Bixby options, for example – nevertheless, each units of true wi-fi buds can be utilized with any smartphone. 

apple airpods vs samsung galaxy buds

The Samsung Galaxy Buds (Picture credit score: TechRadar)

Apple AirPods (2019) vs Samsung Galaxy Buds: value and availability

The brand new Apple AirPods (2019) value $159/£159/AU$249 with the usual charging case, and $199/£199/AU$319 with the brand new Wi-fi Charging Case bundled in.

This is similar value because the originals, that are not being offered by Apple, however must be out there from third-party retailers whereas shares final. It is price retaining a watch out for AirPods offers for those who’re not within the new wi-fi charging case or marginally sooner pairing occasions, as we have seen some first rate reductions for the reason that up to date fashions got here out. 

You can even buy the wi-fi charging case individually for $79 / £79 / AU$129, which is sweet information in case you have the unique AirPods however wish to improve your case to at least one that helps wi-fi charging, though you may really feel it’s a excessive value to pay for some added comfort. 

Samsung do not cost you any further for this comfort, because the Galaxy Buds’ wi-fi charging case comes as commonplace.

The Samsung Galaxy Buds barely undercut the worth of the AirPods (2019) at $149 (£139 / AU$249). 

So, until you go for the AirPods (2019) with the wi-fi charging case, there’s not lots in it in relation to value, and evaluating the 2 in all probability received’t assist making a decision (until you actually care about that $10 distinction.)

You may get a number of the greatest true wi-fi earbuds for much less in fact; the Optoma NuForce BE Free5 wi-fi earbuds present simply how accessible actually wi-fi headphones are at this time, costing $100 (about £75, AU$134).

apple airpods vs samsung galaxy buds

The Apple AirPods (2019) (Picture credit score: TechRadar)

Apple AirPods (2019) vs Samsung Galaxy Buds: design

The Apple AirPods (2019) have a really distinctive fashion, which you’ll in all probability both love or hate, primarily taking the traditional EarPod design slicing the cables, leaving the stem of the bud to hang around of the ear. 

It’s fascinating that Apple hasn’t modified the design of the earbuds themselves in 2019; in any case, these stem-like protrusions have been extensively mocked upon their authentic launch in 2016, they usually do not do the headphones any favors in 2019.

Like their predecessors, the AirPods (2019) draw battery from a pillbox-like charging case, which incorporates a small LED gentle on the entrance, which lets you test the cost standing of the buds.

True to that inflexible Apple design, you received’t discover the comfort of replaceable silicone eartips, and though they felt comparatively cosy once we examined them, we’d assume twice earlier than sporting them whereas understanding. 

Like we are saying, it is a ‘like it or hate it’ form of design, and if you’re a fan of Apple’s clear aesthetic, you may in all probability just like the AirPods (2019).

The Samsung Galaxy Buds however, have a extra ‘traditional’ true wi-fi earbud design (if such a factor exists), with all of the tech constructed into their pearlescent housing, in contrast to the AirPods (2019), which pack all their tech into the stems. 

General the Samsung Galaxy Buds are fairly dainty, and really feel fairly safe because of the inclusion of rubber wingtips. In our opinion, they’re the extra aesthetically pleasing of the 2 fashions, but it surely actually comes down to non-public style.

Each earbuds have contact controls, which suggests you may summon your telephone’s respective voice assistant (the AirPods can summon Siri on iPhones, whereas the Galaxy Buds summon Bixby on suitable Samsung telephones), play/pause your music, and reply and finish calls.

The Samsung Galaxy Buds (Image credit: TechRadar)

The Samsung Galaxy Buds (Picture credit score: TechRadar)

Apple AirPods (2019) vs Samsung Galaxy Buds: options

Connectivity has at all times been a little bit of a sticking level in relation to true wi-fi earbuds, however each the Apple AirPods (2019)and the Samsung Galaxy Buds pair seamlessly – so long as you’re utilizing a smartphone in the identical household.

The AirPods (2019) pair much more rapidly than their predecessors, because of a newly-designed H1 chip which Apple has constructed particularly for the headphones. If you happen to’re utilizing an iPhone, an choice to pair the AirPods (2019) will seem in your telephone display screen as quickly as you open the charging case, in addition to the battery standing of the AirPods and the charging case.

Whereas the Galaxy Buds usually join very properly to Samsung telephones, their connectivity appears to range between totally different customers; a number of writers on the TechRadar workforce examined the buds, and whereas some skilled no connection dropouts, others skilled them often.  

A lot of the points with connectivity appears to have been addressed by a software program replace despatched out by Samsung, however as with most true wi-fi buds, it’s possible you’ll expertise connection dropouts if you’re utilizing them close by different Bluetooth gadgets. 

Whereas Apple AirPods don’t include their very own app, the Samsung Galaxy Buds have the Galaxy Wearables app, which lets you change the EQ settings, and activate options like ‘ambient sound’.

This lets some environmental noise cross by the earbuds – useful for those who’re biking or operating and wish to pay attention to visitors. 

This app is simply out there on Android telephones so if you would like options like this and you’ve got an iPhone, you’re going to be disillusioned – except for simpler connectivity, this may very well be one more reason to stay to the AirPods in case you have an iPhone, and vice versa in case you have a Android telephone. 

apple airpods vs samsung galaxy buds

The Apple AirPods (2019) (Picture credit score: TechRadar)

Apple AirPods (2019) vs Samsung Galaxy Buds: battery life

The Apple AirPods include 5 hours of battery life within the buds themselves, and the charging case gives an extra 20 hours of energy on high of that. Apple additionally says that the second-generation mannequin gives “three hours of talk-time from a single cost”, up from the 2 hours supplied by the originals. 

The Samsung Galaxy Buds no less than beat the AirPods (2019) on this regard, with six hours constructed into the buds themselves – however the charging case solely gives a further seven hours of battery – a measly quantity in comparison with the AirPods’ 20. 

You probably have the unique AirPods, you may nonetheless purchase the case individually and luxuriate in the advantages of wi-fi charging.

After all, for those who get the AirPods 2 with the wi-fi charging case, it’ll value you round $40 greater than for those who purchased them with the usual charging case.

Samsung places no such premium by itself wi-fi charging case, which comes with the Galaxy Buds at no further value.

Each wi-fi charging circumstances can be utilized with a Qi-compatible charging mat, however the Samsung Galaxy Buds have one other trick up their sleeve: in case you have the Galaxy S10 telephone, you may arrange two-way wi-fi charging and place your headphones on the rear of the machine to get them charged up as properly. It’s good, and we discovered it to work seamlessly.

apple airpods vs samsung galaxy buds

The Samsung Galaxy Buds’ charging case (Picture credit score: TechRadar)

Apple AirPods (2019) vs Samsung Galaxy Buds: audio efficiency

True wi-fi earbuds get a foul rap in relation to audio efficiency, however they’re getting higher on a regular basis – and the AirPods (2019) and Galaxy Buds are good examples of this. 

When it comes to audio high quality, the AirPods (2019) have a vigorous, highly effective presentation, though they’ll sound barely harsh in relation to higher-frequency sounds, they usually aren’t the bassiest earbuds available on the market.

If you happen to’re a real bass-head, you may choose the Galaxy Buds, which have a hotter, and usually extra bass-heavy soundstage.

Neither of those buds will supply the identical form of audio prowess that a actually good pair of over-ear headphones will, however you do get the liberty of wi-fi connectivity in alternate for a barely much less highly effective sound. 

apple airpods vs samsung galaxy buds

The Apple AirPods (2019) (Picture credit score: TechRadar)

Apple AirPods (2019) vs Samsung Galaxy Buds: verdict

It’s tough to present a definitive reply to the query of which is the higher true wi-fi earbud. Each the Apple AirPods (2019) and the Samsung Galaxy Buds have loads of good (and fewer good) options, and at roughly the identical value, there’s not lots in it.

Slightly than focussing an excessive amount of on the (until you actually dislike the hanging stem look of the AirPods), it’s in all probability greatest to ask your self “which ecosystem is greatest for me?”

You probably have an iPhone or an iPad, it’s possible that the AirPods (2019) will swimsuit you higher than the Galaxy Buds, with hands-free entry to Siri and quick connectivity. 

Likewise, for those who contemplate your self a Samsung fan, the additional options afforded by the Galaxy Wearables App signifies that the Galaxy Buds are in all probability the smarter selection. 

That’s to not say you may’t use both mannequin with any smartphone you need – you completely can, you simply may discover the buds don’t join fairly in addition to for those who use them with a tool in the identical ecosystem. 

It’s additionally price noting that there are many different manufacturers making true wi-fi earbuds lately which will swimsuit you higher than both choices from Apple or Samsung. 

Actually, one among our favourite pairs of true wi-fi earbuds are the RHA TrueConnect True Wi-fi Earbuds, that are the identical value because the Galaxy Buds, and supply a balanced, detailed sound, and a dependable Bluetooth connection. 

You would additionally spend a little bit extra on our high true wi-fi earbuds for 2020, the Sony WF-1000XM3 if you would like premium options like noise cancellation included along with your buds.