A couple of years ago, Google introduced the Pixel Buds. While these are wireless, the left and right buds are connected by a wire. The accessory's big feature at the time of its unveiling was (and still is) real-time language translation. In other words, those wearing the Pixel Buds could be listening to someone speak in a foreign language but hear the words translated into their own native tongue instantly. But that wire connecting the left and right earbuds surely confused consumers and even Google's own employees in the age of the AirPods. Not too long after the Pixel Buds were launched, at least one Google rep in a New York pop-up store told a consumer to cut that cord once he took the product home. When the consumer admonished him for giving him that advice, the rep replied, "Well, I better stop telling people that."
Google has added new tapping gestures to the Pixel Buds and earlier this year an update improved the battery life and removed a Bluetooth connectivity lag that was bothering users. Still, two years is practically an eternity in the tech world and we could see the Pixel Buds 2 introduced at the Made by Google event on October 15th. A source cited by 9to5Google didn't give away much information except to say that the second-generation of the wireless Bluetooth earbuds will indeed show up alongside the new Pixels and the other products that Google plans on unwrapping at the event. Unfortunately, the source couldn't-or wouldn't-reveal whether the latest version of the product will feature left and right in-ear buds that are not connected by a wire or a cord. Frankly, there is no good reason we can think of for Google to keep the left and right buds connected. Sure, it makes it harder for one bud to fall out of the user's ear and get lost forever. On the other hand, the current Pixel Buds certainly look dated.Over the last two years,
Since Google first launched the Pixel Buds, a lot has changed in this sector of the mobile market. Earlier this year Apple introduced its second-gen AirPods with an optional wireless charging case
to work with the AirPower wireless charging pad, improved battery life, and always-on Siri. Samsung replaced the Gear IconX with the Galaxy Buds, and both Amazon and Microsoft unveiled their own wireless buds. The in-ear wearables segment is expected to be the fastest-growing part of the wearables market and according to Gartner, this sector will account for the shipping of 158.43 million units by 2022. That estimate even tops the 115.20 million smartwatches that Gartner expects to see delivered that year.
This year Google has the perfect opportunity to refresh the Pixel Buds and redesign them. That is because the company has added a ton of new features to the Pixel 4 series that will also be introduced on October 15th. The new Pixels will carry screens that refresh at 90Hz for smoother scrolling and video gameplay, and Ambient EQ will automatically adjust the white balance of the screen on each model based on ambient lighting. In addition, a new Motion Sense feature uses radar-based chips to allow some features to be controlled with hand gestures (such as skipping through content on streaming video and music apps, dismissing an alarm/timer, and more). Google has also enhanced Face unlock to include a more secure 3D system and has added a second camera to the new square module on the back.
Fans of the Google ecosystem are getting exciting about upgrading to the new Pixels and it would appear that they will also have the opportunity to upgrade their Pixel Buds as well.