Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Beats Studio Buds

Caitlin McGarry, Gizmodo:

I tested pairing Studio Buds to an iPhone 12 Pro and a Google Pixel 5, and the process was identical for both devices. Open the case lid, press the Bluetooth pairing button nestled between the two earbuds, and a notification with an image of the Studio Buds requesting permission to connect pops up almost instantly. The only difference between the Android and iOS experience is the need for an additional Beats app on an Android phone to customize the earbuds’ controls and update the firmware for new features. On an iPhone, these controls are accessible from the Bluetooth settings, no app required. Otherwise, you get the same exact experience.

McGarry says that, unlike other Beats headphones, the Studio Buds do not have any of Apple’s custom wireless chips, so they do not support automatic device pairing or switching. But they do support other exclusive-to-AirPods features like “Hey, Siri” and the simplified setup process. I cannot imagine the former would ever be supported in headphones from a non-Apple-owned company, but I have to wonder if the better Bluetooth configuration could be made available to other accessory makers.