13 Best Wireless Earbuds (2021): Really Wireless, Cheap, and More
Completely wireless headphones they’re one of those ideas that sounds like a dream: Insert a headset into every ear and listen to music or take indifferent calls from everything. Until recently, the reality was quite different. The first wireless shoots were gigantic, they died after a few hours, and had a few other problems. Fortunately, times have changed. There are a bunch of new models that look fabulous and work (almost) perfectly. Having tested dozens of them for the last four years, here are our favorite wireless headphones now, in a wide range of styles and prices.
For more top choices, ours Best Wireless Headphones, Best Noise Canceling Headphones, Best Cheap Headphones, and Best Training Earbuds guides can help.
Updated June 2021: We have added Echo Buds Plus and Pixel Buds A-Series.
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How to Define Wireless Headphones
We have seen variations pass by several names: real wireless headphones, really wireless headphones, fully wireless earbuds, fully wireless headphones, wireless headphones. Here at WIRED, if a pair of headphones connects to your phone / computer via Bluetooth, and it doesn’t have a cord that connects the left earpiece to the right, we just call them wireless. Wireless sets typically come with two popcorn-sized bowls, each with a battery inside, and a charging cradle that carries an extra battery and keeps them safe when you don’t carry them. Others have a cord or a band around the neck that connects the two shoots together.
They’re liberating, but come with problems, such as limited battery life (don’t buy them with less than five hours), confusing controls, and reliance on a recharging case. They’re also a little easier to lose than traditional headphones, and replacing a bud can be expensive.
And our choices