Updated: Jun 25
So first I was an all-time android user. A couple of months back I switched to iPhone (You can read more about that journey here). The past couple of months I have had a hidden desire to get myself a pair of true wireless earphones. This post is just about my decision to buy the AirPods 2 from the vast available options available and why.
I have always been the type of person who tried to get the cheapest stuff packed with a ton of features. So naturally, my first options were the budget True Wireless Earbuds (TWS). So my choices were
Redmi Earbuds S (Rs 1799): Well at the time of writing this post these were available at a price of Rs 1799 and seemed a good choice. 12 hours of playback time, noise cancellation, sweat/splash-proof. So I checked some YouTube reviews. And most came back with the sound quality being not up to the mark. Well, I just wanted TWS earbuds because they were cool. But wait... paying almost Rs 1800 for earphones that failed in one important basic criteria of being earphones, i.e. playing music, didn't make sense. I know I was going to regret this. So my search continues.
OPPO ENCO W31 True Wireless Earphone with Dual-Mic (Rs 3799): So I decided to raise my budget to cause all the rest below the Rs 2000 mark was almost the same and failed in the music quality department. This too packed a ton of features. 15 hours of playback time, noise cancellation, extra-base mode, low latency mode, etc. Well, that's a good number of features for the price. Again back to some awesome YouTube reviewers. Most came back with positive remarks. But again some mentioned the sound not that great as the drivers were only 8mm. So better check some more options around the Rs 4000 sound mark.
Mi True Wireless Earphones 2 (Rs 4499): This was an earbud that seemed to have done everything right. It had noise cancellation, 14.2mm drivers, 14 hours battery life with case included, low latency, good YouTube reviews, and the ugly version of Apple Airpod looks. Ugly because it seemed to have thick handles that seemed to be sticking out of the ear a lot. Ya! so now I was starting to come up to the Apple Airpod clone zone. So not my basic search transformed to the best Apple Airpod clone search.
OPPO ENCO True Wireless Headphone (Rs 7990): 13.4 mm drivers, 25 hours battery life, low latency mode, water resistance, TOUCH CONTROL to change music, and perform additional actions and wireless charging. What more could you ask for? So I did the usual YouTubing and got all the good reviews. But one thing that kept on coming up was, it looks similar to AirPods. Also, a close comparison I got referenced as an alternative on some videos was the RealMe Buds Air. So I had to give that a try too.
RealMe Buds Air (Rs 3889): Wireless charging, 12mm audio drivers, 17 hours playback, super-low latency. And the best part is it is designed by RealMe but looks exactly by Apple AirPods. So who is it actually designed by? Wondering!!!! Back to my research. YouTube to the rescue. Reviews were ok. But again the same comment came again and again. It looks exactly like the Apple AirPods. I had seen enough so now was the time to decide.
So at this point, I had seen enough. I had finally figured out a pattern that most of the TWS earbuds were trying to compete with the Apple AirPods and if one device was the competitor of many other devices then there must be something in that device that makes it worth the competition. Also, Apple was the company that perfected the TWS earbuds and brought it to the public at large. So from a creator's point of view who has to spend time, effort, and money on research and development of a product that has changed the way we listen to music. They need some credit. But it cost 5 times the cost of RealMe Buds Air and double that of OPPO ENCO earbuds.
That is where the YouTube video of Nabeel Nawab came in (Link at the end of the article). He just mentioned one thing. If someone looks at these he will first have the impression that there are the Apple AirPod and later when figures out that these mostly just look alike, then it would turn out to be a comedy factor. That was it. I narrowed down the AirPods and don't regret my decision.
The Point To Note
One thing that is worth noting is that I use an iPhone and iPad and already somewhat in the ecosystem. So naturally, the Apple AirPod would deliver me the best experience. If you are using Android then your priorities can differ and your budget would also play a large factor. This is just my decision factors. So this article might just point you in the right direction, however, the choice should always be yours.
Click here to watch Nabeel Nawab's video.