You’ve probably noticed the new tiny white wireless earbuds that everyone is wearing – and everyone is complaining about losing! They look great, but how long do True Wireless earbuds actually last? We’ll guide you through Apple AirPods and our own SoundLiberty 53‘s, to explain all the differences!
Wireless Apple Earbuds: The Beginning of a Battery Draining Era?
Chances are that you or at least one person you know are currently using a pair of True Wireless earbuds. These headphones were introduced to the mainstream in 2016 with Apple True Wireless earbuds (also known as Apple AirPods). Their popularity has been intense; more and more commuters are enjoying the advantages of everyday wire-free connectivity. The convenience of not having a cord includes easy and tangle-free access as well as quick pairing using Bluetooth technology.
True Wireless is a relatively new technology that allows wireless audio without any connector or cable between the earpieces. While such headphones provide a lot of advantages, poor battery life has been the biggest problem of this technology so far. One of the reasons for this has been the constant need to maintain wireless connectivity between the earpieces and the device, which drains the battery quickly.
As more companies are producing high-quality True Wireless earbuds, an increasing number of people are realizing that power deficiency can become a burden. They’re asking important questions, notably: how long do the Apple wireless earbuds last, what are the longest lasting earbuds, and what is the life expectancy of True Wireless earbuds?
How Long Do Apple Wireless Earbuds Last?
Peruse the Apple user guide and you’ll find that AirPods have a listening time of up to 5 hours, or talk time of up to 2 hours with a single charge. That means that most users have to charge them daily or at least once every two days, in order to avoid a frustrating power outage while they are on the way home. For heavy users, they can be a real problem; a single charge can not make the earbuds last for a whole day.
After the first genuine user complaints about the true wireless earbuds (…after consistently misplacing them!) Apple provided a solution: the introduction of the charging case. Extending the listening time, the charging case acted essentially as a portable charger. Apple claims Airpods now have more than 24 hours of listening time and up to 11 hours of talk time. This is when paired with a fully charged case.
Even so, people are mad. As a recent VICE article noted,
For roughly 18 months, AirPods play music, or podcasts, or make phone calls. Then the lithium-ion batteries will stop holding much of a charge, and the AirPods will slowly become unusable. They can’t be repaired because they’re glued together. They can’t be thrown out, or else the lithium-ion battery may start a fire in the garbage compactor. They can’t be easily recycled, because there’s no safe way to separate the lithium-ion battery from the plastic shell. Instead, the AirPods sit in your drawer forever.AirPods Are a Tragedy, Caroline Haskins/VICE
What Are the Longest Lasting Earbuds?
Considering the hype built around Apple AirPods, you wouldn’t be blamed for thinking the industry-leaders had set the bar; that all True Wireless headphones would have their smaller battery life.
Yet, while the charging case seems quite a big improvement in power efficiency, other earbuds have considerably longer battery life.
Take, for instance, SoundLiberty 53.
In comparison to AirPods, these TaoTronics True Wireless earbuds have a continuous playtime of 40 hours when using their pocket size charging case. Almost double the battery life means they can be used for days without needing to recharge the case, giving you greater freedom.
This is predominantly thanks to the large, 650mAh battery capacity of the case, allowing for comparatively more energy to be stored at every recharge. The SoundLiberty 53 True Wireless earbuds might have 5 hours of playtime with a single charge, but their fast charge function means you can fully charge them within an hour. That helps you avoid a power outage on the way home with just a few minutes charge. Counting the additional 35 hours given by the charging case, you can easily get a weeks’ worth of listening on your commute.
Another factor that contributes to longer battery life is the size and weight of the charging case: weighing no more than 1.9oz and measuring shorter than a bank card, it can be carried practically everywhere in your pocket. That allows you to enjoy a full 40-hour playtime wherever you go.
What is the Life Expectancy of AirPods?
There are a few, incredibly important reasons to think about the life expectancy of your headphones. Not least because you want to get the most for your money and listen for years to come!
Another, more pressing aspect of True Wireless headphones is their environmental impact. As people become more environmentally aware, they are looking for headphones that go the distance and prevent further electronic waste. From young climate change protesters to adults doing their bit for the world, this is an important issue.
Many users have reported a very short life expectancy of the Apple true wireless earbuds. This perhaps isn’t a shock to anyone who had an iPhone whose battery needed replacing, but we digress…
The main reason for the short life expectancy is the decrease in power efficiency: the more you use the AirPods, the more they need charging and the less their autonomous playtime lasts. This is because each battery only has around 500 full re-charge cycles before it starts to degrade. Users have noted that:
the original five hours on a single charge dropped to half that. Or it could be worse. Cult of Mac’s Ian Fuchs, who purchased his pair on launch day, estimates that his last “maybe 70-80 minutes of music/podcast listening and 20-30 on a phone call.”Don’t expect your AirPods to last forever, Ed Hardy/CultOfMac
As a result, AirPods reportedly end up in the trash too early, as the degradation levels frustrated users who report that after two years the AirPods become practically useless.
What is the Life Expectancy of TaoTronics True Wireless Earbuds?
TaoTronics have sought to solve this issue with their longer lasting battery case. As a result, even if the autonomy naturally degrades through the years, it should still be enough to last for several days. This, when coupled with the 18-month warranty, means they should last for years.
But in order to help them last longer, you need to adhere to some simple rules.
How Do You Make True Wireless Earbuds Last Longer?
No matter their battery life and life expectancy, it’s crucial you take steps to make your earbuds last longer.
- Carry Your Case: This is important because it is recommended that you don’t let batteries fully run out of charge, and also – you don’t want your earphones to fully run out of charge…
- Build a Routine: Try building a routine around charging your True Wireless earbuds so you don’t forget and let them fully exhaust their battery. The best way to build such a routine is to charge them when you’re not using them: while sleeping, in the car or at work, pop them in their case to charge (this also keeps them safe!)
- Clean the Earbuds: From time to time, use a damp towel for the rubber part and a toothpick dipped in water for the inner part. Needless to say you have to be gentle with this!
- Don’t Carry Them In Your Pocket: The case isn’t just there to charge. Dust and items like keys that you store in your pocket can seriously damage the earbuds, reducing their life expectancy. Store them in their case and keep both away from liquids at all times.
- Avoid Sleeping with Your Headphones On: As that can cause serious harm! Instead, place them in a case to store them safely next to your bed.
Apple AirPods are a popular, more expensive brand, but users raise concerns both about their poor battery life. They bemoan that Airpods demand constant recharging and their short life expectancy sends them to the trash too early. Considering environment impact alongside personal satisfaction, it’s time to be more conscious about our headphones. They need to last for a long time in daily use, and have a longer life expectancy.
Concerned about your earbuds’ battery life? Consider buying headphones that can provide you with more than 30 hours of playtime. You can check out TaoTronics True Wireless range here!