Many brands that make both smartphones and audio products tend to design them to work a little better together, in the hope that this tight integration will keep buyers locked into the ecosystem. their. Some examples include Apple’s AirPods Pro, OnePlus and Oppo’s true wireless earbuds, and Samsung’s Galaxy Buds range of headphones, all of which tend to have a slight edge in features or capabilities when used. with smartphones from the same respective brand.
Google’s Pixel Buds lineup has taken a similar approach, with its usability and features geared towards Android smartphones and tablets. However, what was lacking in the past was the presence of a flagship true wireless headset from Google. That has now changed, with launch afterward Google Pixel Buds Pro is priced at Rs. 19,990 in India.
With active noise cancellation, wireless charging, and hands-free access to the Google Assistant, the Pixel Buds Pro is a feature-packed TWS option that looks to challenge the leading brands of true wireless headphones. Brands like Apple, Samsung and Sony etc. Are these the best top true wireless earbuds for Android users? Find out in this review.
Google Pixel Buds Pro Design and Features
Google is consistent with its design and styling for the Pixel Buds and Pixel Buds Pro series, sticking to the interface scenario. That said, the earphones are significantly larger and bulkier than the Pixel Buds A-Series, but the shape means the headphones don’t stick out as much as you might think. In fact, all that bulk not only ensures a secure and quite comfortable fit, but also excellent passive noise isolation.
Each earphone has three microphones – one on the inside and two on the outside – along with the Google logo at the top of the touch area for the controls. Only touch and hold gestures are customizable on Google Pixel Buds Pro and can be set to toggle active noise control (switch between ANC and transparency mode), with separate functions that can assigned to each headset. Tap the playback control gesture and adjust the volume with a swipe gesture.
The touch controls are usually accurate, but sometimes swipe gestures are registered as touches, which is a bit annoying. I’ve set a custom function to cycle between noise control modes, as calling the Google Assistant can be done hands-free with ‘Hey Google’ or ‘OK Google’ voice commands.
The Google Assistant itself worked great on the Pixel Buds Pro. The wake phrase works reliably and can do many things with voice commands, including finding information and controlling IoT devices linked to your Google account, and controlling functions. functions such as playback and volume on the headphones themselves. The voice assistant functionality on the Google Pixel Buds Pro is just as good, if not better, on the Google Pixel Buds Pro Google Nest Audio smart speaker.
The charging case of Google Pixel Buds Pro is quite similar to the mid-range models Pixel Buds A-Series in terms of design, with an egg-like shape and contrasting colors for the outside and inside (on the white version). The USB Type-C port is at the bottom, the pairing button is at the back near the bottom, and there’s a single indicator light just below the lid that would otherwise be hidden when unlit.
It has a convenient shape and size, and is easy to store in a pocket or small handbag. Notably, the charging case of the Pixel Buds Pro supports Qi wireless charging. The sales package includes a total of three pairs of silicone ear tips of different sizes, but no charging cable, which is a bit disappointing given the price of the headset.
In India, Google Pixel Buds Pro comes in only one color variant – black earphones and white charging case. The headphones are rated IPX4 for water resistance, while the charging case also has an IPX2 rating. The headphones also have sensors for in-ear detection and opening or closing the case to ensure a faster connection.
Google Pixel Buds Pro Specifications and Apps
Just as the Apple AirPods range needs an iOS device to use its full potential, the Google Pixel Buds Pro requires an Android device to take full advantage of its features. This includes the Pixel Buds app, which is only available for Android. Therefore, you can use the headphones with your iPhone if you want by simply pairing them with your iOS device, as you would with any other pair of Bluetooth headphones.
The Pixel Buds app is pretty well put together with a neat home screen that effectively lists all the main functions. When connected, the top of the app will visually show the battery level of each earphone and case separately. The Android operating system will also push a drop-down notification for the battery level by default, when the headset is connected.
Other options include specific details for the Google Assistant on the headset, guide to touch controls, sound modes, test earmuffs, in-ear detection, audio toggles for devices. compatible device linked to your Google account and multipoint connection. You can also perform a firmware update for Pixel Buds Pro using the app.
Disappointingly, there are no detailed equalizer settings, other than control to boost lows and highs at low volumes. There’s also no customization for ANC since you only get a single level, but you can perform ear-tip sealing tests in the app to ensure that noise isolation is optimized for FACILITATE.
Google Pixel Buds Pro has 11mm dynamic drivers and uses Bluetooth 5 for connectivity, supporting Bluetooth SBC and AAC codecs. Due to my focus on Android source devices, I found the lack of support for the enhanced Bluetooth codec to be quite disappointing. Competing devices like Sony WF-1000XM4 and Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 both support advanced codecs and are available for almost the same price as the Pixel Buds Pro.
Google Pixel Buds Pro performance and battery life
The Google Pixel Buds Pro goes up against a number of capable competitors in the high-end TWS segment, including the Sony WF-1000XM4 and Apple AirPods Pro. However, its positioning is quite different from those two options as its feature set is positioned towards Android smartphone and tablet users.
While a direct comparison to the AirPods Pro wouldn’t be entirely fair, the Pixel Buds Pro are certainly a bit behind. Sony WF-1000XM4 and Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3both are device agnostic for application support and both have enhanced Bluetooth codec support.
Objectively though, there’s a lot to like with the Google Pixel Buds Pro, and I quite enjoyed my time with the headphones thanks to the rich, warm, and melodious sound. The Pixel Buds Pro have been fine-tuned, and the sound gives the headphones a different character, quite refreshing compared to the more detailed and analytical-oriented sonic signatures of competing options.
Listening to Stay With Me from Calvin Harris’ latest album, I love the warmth in the sound. The lows in the deep, mid-tempo beats have a distinctly powerful groan, giving the sound a strong sense of fun. The tonal signature is a classic U-shape, which boosts bass and highs. Fortunately, though, the average range doesn’t drop too much; The diverse vocal styles of Justin Timberlake, Pharrell Williams and Halsey sounded great through the song, despite the obvious warmth in the sound.
Turn up the volume and listen to Coldplay and Beyonce’s Hymn for the Weekend is quite enjoyable, with the song sounding significantly different on the Google Pixel Buds Pro than my current reference point for true wireless headphones. the, Sony WF-1000XM4. While the latter offers more detail, the former offers more character and a sense of aggression. The sound feels more engaging and energetic, although the Pixel Buds Pro seemed to struggle a bit with the busier parts of the track when the volume was turned up.
While the soundstage feels pretty wide and clean, it sometimes feels like too much is going on, with the headphones failing to adapt to the nuances of the track as quickly as competing options. Here, the Google Pixel Buds Pro is a bit short, and this is its only real downside. Slower, softer tracks like Bonobo’s Bambro Koyo Ganda sounded detailed and reasonably cohesive on the Pixel Buds Pro, while fast, busy music seemed to give the headphones a hard time, with the lack of Advanced codec support is the obvious reason for this.
Active noise cancellation on the Google Pixel Buds Pro is pretty good, with good noise cancellation both indoors and outdoors. It seems to be especially effective for low-frequency sounds, eliminating the spinning of ceiling fans when at home and much of the noise from the nearby railway line when outside.
I did hear a faint buzz when the headphones were on and no music was playing, which was oddly inaudible when the headphones were off. However, this pretty much disappeared while the music was playing, so I didn’t think much of it. Overall, the active noise cancellation feature on the Pixel Buds Pro is quite effective both indoors and outdoors.
Making and receiving calls on the Google Pixel Buds Pro is easy, and the great hands-free mode of the Google Assistant makes it possible for me to do a lot of this without holding my phone. Call quality itself was good both indoors and outdoors, and ANC made a significant difference in improving the sound.
Battery life on the Google Pixel Buds Pro is pretty good on the headphones, running for over six hours on a single charge with ANC active and at moderate volumes. The charging case added two additional charges, for a total run time of about 18 hours per charge cycle. The overall number isn’t exceptional, but it’s not too bad either.
While the Google Pixel Buds range has been around for a while as the company’s ‘ecosystem’ game, it’s still missing an important flagship device to date. The Google Pixel Buds Pro deliver exactly what you’d expect from a flagship headset, with helpful features like active noise cancellation, app support, and responsive hands-free access to the Google Assistant.
While the sound quality is fun and full of character, the Google Pixel Buds Pro falls short in detail and coherence, compared to competing options like Sony WF-1000XM4, which gives more insights and analysis. That said, this is a really good pair of wireless headphones that I’ve had a great time reviewing, especially given the reliable hands-free Google Assistant access and hands-free accessibility. .