The Google Pixel Buds aren’t quite receiving the kind of praise that Google were probably hoping for; in fact, quite the opposite.
More than a few reviewers have poured criticism on them for solving problems that didn’t exist in the first place. But to tell the truth, we’ve rather enjoyed our time with them. They may not be bits of tech you should queue hours for, but if you do receive a pair this Christmas, there are plenty of cool features that might make your life that much easier, especially if you fall into one of the below categories.
You’re into wireless technology
Okay, let’s be real - no one’s really into wireless technology, but we’ve had no choice but to deal with it since the industry has all but eliminated the headphone jack. And the Pixel Buds are as decent a solution as any.
They come in a neat carrying case that looks cute. It’s coated with a nice fabric that’s now a part of a recognisable Google design language and fits well into your pocket. The case doubles as a portable charger for the Buds it houses, much like the Apple AirPods, although we’d say the latter just tops this in terms of build quality.
But unlike the AirPods, this isn’t actually “wireless”. A fabric cable connects the two earpieces and rests on your neck. You might prefer it this way - it looks conventional (read: far less silly) and prevents your precious earpieces from slipping out and falling into MRT gaps, drains and all sorts of places they might never be rescued from.
The Pixel Buds also connect incredibly fast, regardless of whether you're on Android or iOS. After their first sync, the Buds pair virtually instantly as you take them out of the case - as long as your device's Bluetooth is switched on, of course. There are no buttons to push or controls to fiddle with. It’s that seamless and convenient.
Google Assistant lovers
If you constantly find yourself using Google Assistant, you'll find the Pixel Buds especially helpful. And even if you don’t use the Assistant that frequently, they may just give you a reason to.
On Buds, Assistant works incredibly fast. It activates at the tap of a touch-sensitive surface (the right earbud) and takes in your request instantly - you simply touch and talk right away.
This reduces the number of steps you need to get information on the go, so instead of whipping out your phone and asking for directions or answering your friends on Whatsapp with a quick acknowledgement to something, you can do it on the Pixel Buds. We found requesting specific songs on Spotify while we were on the move and doing simple things like turning on the torch most handy.