Google has unveiled its equivalent of the Apple AirPods. They are called Pixel Buds, and are priced exactly the same – $159.
Features of Google’s Pixel Buds
- Real time translation into 40 different languages
- Semi-occluded design
- Battery life is five hours, and charging case performs four charges at a time
The Pixel Buds are not as “futuristic” in their appearance. They sport a black cable to hold them together as they hang around your neck. It is not as fancy as the truly wireless AirPods, but you have a higher chance of losing the AirPods due to their design.
One of the most talked about features is the instant translation of languages through the Pixel Buds and Google Assistant.
At Google’s unveiling, two employees provided a demonstration of the Pixel Buds’ translation feature. One employee spoke in English, and the conversation was live translated into Swedish for the other employee.
See the demo here:
To use the translation feature, you simply hold your finger down on the bud and say, “Help me speak spanish”. The translator will activate, and the person you are speaking to simply speaks into your phone, and you hear the translation in your ear.
While the translation is not instant, it is very fast. Google also worked to make the translation voice more natural sounding, making it easy and convenient to use and understand.
There is one trick with the translation feature. While you do not have to have the new Pixel 2, it is required that you have one of the newer Android models. The Pixel Buds will not work for translating unless Google Assistant is included in the phone.
The Pixel Buds were designed to be more convenient rather than stylish. According to Google, the choice to go with a “corded” style over a wireless version was due to research on earbud users. Most users are more comfortable with having something around their neck rather than risking the loss of expensive wireless buds.
Along with the outer appearance, Google purposely designed the Pixel Buds to be semi-occluded. This means that instead of blocking all sound out when wearing the earbuds, you can still slightly hear what is going on around you. This is convenient for a feature that is social like translating.
The Pixel Buds are not intended to be used for working out. While Google is working to get the earbuds sweat-proof certified, the Pixel Buds were intended for everyday listening.
Google released a number of products, from home assistants, to a laptop.
Check out more of Google’s newest products here:
Featured image courtesy of Google.