The countdown is on to the highly-anticipated release of Samsung's Galaxy Buds, the tech giant's first foray into the world of wireless earbuds. Considering that the Buds' March 8 launch is coming a few years after Apple first introduced us to its AirPods, Samsung's latest gadget unsurprisingly boasts a few updates over its competitor — most notably, its innovative on-the-go charging abilities. Even longtime Apple devotees who don't want to part with their iOS devices might be wondering: Will Samsung's Galaxy Buds work with an iPhone? Here's everything you should know before making the leap.
With a retail price of $129.99, the Galaxy Buds have been generating some serious buzz due to the fact that they are $30 cheaper than their iOS-compatible counterparts and boast many of the same (if not better) features. Considering that Apple released its AirPods back in 2016, Samsung's version of wireless earbuds has advances in technology to thank for many of its upgrades, particularly its wireless power share features. In addition to wireless charging capabilities, Galaxy Buds users can also fuel up their gadgets simply by placing them on the company's new Galaxy S10 or a wireless charging device. That's in addition to the slightly superior battery life that the Galaxy Buds boast in comparison to the AirPods (about six hours of battery life versus five hours of listening time and two hours of talk time).
Despite this, many iPhone owners might hesitate before making the switch to Samsung's Galaxy Buds or adding them to their wireless earbud arsenal because of questions surrounding the device's compatibility with their current smartphones.
So far, Samsung has not said whether or not their Galaxy Buds are compatible with iOS systems, and the tech company did not immediately respond to an Elite Daily email inquiring for clarification on the subject. However, many news sources have reported that it's likely that you'll be able to pair the new Buds with Apple devices just like any standard wireless earbuds — You just might be sacrificing a few of the extra get you'd get using the corresponding Galaxy gadgets.
For example, pairing the Buds with your iPhone might impact how you use voice commands with the company's personal assistant, Bixby, according to Business Daily. Considering that the Galaxy Buds are believed to be hands-free devices, the connectivity might not be as seamless and it's likely that you'll be missing out on the Buds' Ambient Aware Mode feature (when your earbuds and volume levels automatically adjust to counteract the background noise of your surroundings). In addition, you won't be able to take advantage of the device's wireless device-to-device charging feature.
Still, per tech website iMore, Samsung has reportedly said that their new wireless earbuds will include support for Apple's personal assistant Siri and you'll be able to listen to music like usual.
After weighing their pros and cons, I think it's safe to say that the AirPods and the Galaxy Buds are pretty similar in that they both boast a built-in microphone and Bluetooth capabilities, as well as their own personal assistants. Plus, it sounds like Apple will be taking a leaf from Samsung's book in the near future.
According to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, it's likely that the company will implement wireless charging for their newest model of AirPods as well as "bilateral wireless charging for charging other devices" when they roll out their newest gadgets, so I'd weigh the choices and see which option is best for you and your situation in the meantime.