Are Airpods the future?
Well, we know all the technical details and how they will work. Apple has shown this very detailed in their keynote. But how will they fit into our lives? Are they a glimpse of the future?
Apple is known to be late in the market with their products. But they almost always do something fundamentally different than the competition.
They delight us and solve problems that we didn’t even recognize. Airpods are no difference. While they’re still standard bluetooth headphones, the pairing problems were solved perfectly with the additional W1 chip. They pair instantly and reliable. And for the first time you don’t think twice, when you would like to use bluetooth headphones. The required steps to turn them on a connect them are performed when you open the lid of the carrying box and taking them out. That’s genius and the core of Apples strength.
But they’re not for people who really like music. They don’t have enough seal to sound good. Most in-ear headphones sound significantly better and over-ear headphones almost always do. The best use case are phone calls. Nothing beats them in the category. You can switch to them easily and in an instant. You can choose to use one or both. And you can walk around without a tangling microphone and a short cable.
All interactions are done via Siri. Which is nice, when you want to do complicated things like setting a reminder. But it’s not so nice when you just want to lower the volume. Especially when other people are around. It’s similar to the glance at your Apple Watch which most people interpret as a sign to end the conversation. With Airpods people don’t know if they can speak to you or if you have a call. And if you start talking they don’t know who you’re speaking to. It’s super weird.
I believe Siri was the wrong choice…
Siri only works when you’re alone or when Siri can be heard by everyone. Siri as home speaker would work great and it’s not awkward, since everyone can listen to the response.
The problem is that 98% of the time you want to control what’s playing and you don’t want to give Siri a complex task. That’s where you start to miss the simple cable remote.
So what’s the verdict? Apple did it again. They made something boring very exciting. The technical achievement is undeniable. But I doubt the Airpods will fit into our lives and be worth the cost.
Tell me what you think in the comments…