At just $39.99, Amazon’s all-new Echo Buds are one of the most competitive pairs of true wireless earbuds in their price range.
Amazon says their Alexa-powered devices are more popular now, than ever before, reporting more than half a billion Alexa-enabled devices had been sold worldwide, while engagement with Alexa increased more than 35% in 2022. Amazon recently announced four new and updated Echo devices: Echo Pop, Echo Show 5, Echo Show 5 Kids and Echo Buds.
These new Echo Buds deliver high-quality audio, long-lasting battery life, and premium features at an unbelievable price. They give customers easy access to audio content and Alexa anywhere they might be.Anuj Dron, Senior Product Manager, Amazon’s Echo Team
Going with a different design compared to past rounded Echo Buds, this 2023 model goes for a stick design, similar to AirPods. Amazon calls the new Echo Buds a semi-in-ear design, saying “you can stay connected to your surroundings”, meaning they likely won’t provide much passive noise cancellation, on top of dropping active noise cancellation when compared to the previous model. The semi-in-ear design may be more comfortable for some users during long listening sessions. While these buds therefore don’t have in-ear tips, they do come with two pairs of silicone earbud covers, for easy cleaning. Each bud is housing a 12mm dynamic driver, two microphones, a voice detection accelerometer and Bluetooth 5.2, that helps distinguish between speaking and other sounds, all in an IPX2 sweat-resistant package.
The new Echo Buds of course support and heavily market Alexa compatibility. This allows for hands-free control over music, podcasts and audiobooks, as well as set reminders, make calls and much more. Alexa can be connected to services like Amazon Music, Apple Music, Spotify, Sirius XM, Audible and more. They also support access to Siri on iOS and Google Assistant on Android. If physical controls are more your thing, Echo Buds feature tap controls, which can be customised in the Alexa app. A long press or double tap can play music, answer phones calls, mute the mics and more. The Alexa app, compatible on Android 8.0+ and iOS 14+, also shows you the battery percentage of the case and each bud, as well as features like Find My Echo Buds, mute the mics, delete voice recordings and software updates.
Echo Buds also support multipoint pairing, allowing you to pair to two devices simultaneously and automatically switch to the device playing audio, such as a laptop, phone, tablet, Fire TV and smart speakers. Fire TV integration means you’ll soon be able to put the buds in and connect instantly.
Battery life is fair, with up to 5 hours of music playback on a single charge. This increases to 6 hours with the wake word turned off. With the charging case, you’ll get 20 hours of total playback. A 15 minute charge will provide an additional 2 hours of listening. The new buds do not support wireless charging and don’t include a USB-C cable required to charge them. I guess Amazon had to cut corners somewhere to get the price down.
The new Echo Buds are launching with an introductory price of just $39.99, with four months of Amazon Music Unlimited for free. They will then be priced at $49.99. They are available for pre-order now, with shipping starting on June 7. The 2021 2nd generation Echo Buds with ANC launched from $99.99, so Amazon is going far more aggressive with the pricing on these new non-ANC buds.