Belkin's new wireless earbuds are AirPods Pro rivals with a longer battery life

the belkin soundform immerse true wireless earbuds in black
(Image credit: Belkin)
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CES 2022 has seen in a raft of new true wireless earbuds models, and Belkin's latest could make a great alternative to the popular (and pricey) Apple AirPods Pro.

The new Belkin Soundform Immerse are cheaper than Apple's $249 / £249 / AU$399 wireless earbuds, coming in at $179.99. Global pricing is yet to be announced, but that works out at around £130 / AU$250. 

While the Belkin buds are cheaper, they come with many of the same specs as the AirPods Pro – and a few extras that could entice audiophiles away from the Apple earbuds

The Soundform Immerse come with hybrid active noise cancellation, which means they have a microphone inside and outside each bud to detect unwanted sound and cancel it out. 

The 12mm drivers inside the Soundform Immerse are pretty big for in-ear headphones, which means they should displace lots of air for a powerful sound. And, with aptX HD support, you'll be able to enjoy hi-res audio – something the AirPods Pro can't handle. 

The fact that the AirPods Pro don't support hi-res audio has been a bone of contention among Apple Music users; the streaming service recently introduced lossless streaming at no extra cost to its subscribers, but the company's earbuds and headphones aren't able to to handle these higher quality audio files. 

While the average listener probably isn't too interested in different codecs, the higher bitrate afforded by hi-res audio streams allows you to hear new details in your music that you might not have noticed before; for instance, the slight intake of breath before a vocalist launches into a chorus, or the subtle harmonic variations in an orchestral suite. 

Better specs, cheaper price

the belkin soundform immerse with their charging case

(Image credit: Belkin)

The Belkin Soundform Immerse come with a few other benefits over the Apple AirPods Pro for those that aren't bothered by hi-res audio support. 

For starters, their battery life is much longer, coming in at 36 hours - that's eight hours from the buds themselves with just over four extra charges from the case. The AirPods Pro only manage about 24 hours in total, with the earbuds offering about four-and-a-half hours of playback with active noise cancellation switched on. 

They also look more subtle in the ear than the AirPods Pro, eschewing the long protruding stems that Apple popularized with its first true wireless earbuds, the Apple AirPods

Some people like this design – but many others don't, and the rounded housings offered by the Soundform Immerse will appeal to those that prefer earbuds that don't scream 'Apple'. 

All that's not to say that we dislike the Apple AirPods Pro. They're still among the best noise-cancelling earbuds you can buy, and their Spatial Audio support and integration with the wider Apple ecosystem makes them a great choice if you're an iPhone user. 

However, Belkin's new buds offer a lot of the specs that the AirPods Pro do – including support for the brand's Find My technology should you ever misplace them – at a much lower price. 

Of course, we'll need to test them for ourselves to  find out how well they perform in terms of sound, battery life, fit, and active noise cancellation. But, based on the specs, we think they'll make a great Apple alternative for anyone who wants to save a bit of money without sacrificing the features we've come to expect from class-leading true wireless earbuds.

Olivia Tambini

Olivia was previously TechRadar's Senior Editor - Home Entertainment, covering everything from headphones to TVs. Based in London, she's a popular music graduate who worked in the music industry before finding her calling in journalism. She's previously been interviewed on BBC Radio 5 Live on the subject of multi-room audio, chaired panel discussions on diversity in music festival lineups, and her bylines include T3, Stereoboard, What to Watch, Top Ten Reviews, Creative Bloq, and Croco Magazine. Olivia now has a career in PR.