Samsung launches Galaxy Buds Plus to finally take on Apple's AirPods Pro

Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus
(Image credit: Future)

Samsung has revealed its latest true wireless earbuds, the Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus, at its Unpacked 2020 event in San Francisco. 

With an upgraded battery life, extra inbuilt microphones for improved call audio, and more powerful drivers, the successors to the popular Samsung Galaxy Buds could prove a new rival for the Apple AirPods

The new Samsung Galaxy Buds will cost $149.99, and will be available to buy online from February 14, and in-store from March 6. This works out at around £115 / AU$220, but bear in mind these prices could change when official pricing is confirmed in the UK and Australia. 

If you pre-order the Samsung Galaxy S20 phones before they're released, you get the buds for free, but after that you'll be paying for them.

That makes them a little cheaper than Apple’s AirPods, and significantly cheaper than the Sony WF-1000XM3, our current top true wireless earbuds for 2020.

No noise cancellation

Interestingly, the new earbuds won’t block out environmental sound, bucking the recent trend for noise-cancelling true wireless earbuds, as seen in the AirPods Pro and the Sony WF-1000XM3. 

While they look pretty similar to the original Samsung Galaxy Buds, they do offer an upgrade compared to the previous model, not least in their superior battery life. The earbuds themselves contain 11 hours of charge, while the charging case provides an additional 11 hours, bringing the total battery life to 22 hours. 

Even though that’s an improvement upon their predecessors, the total battery life isn’t huge. 

(Image credit: Future)

11 hours may be a decent battery life for the earbuds themselves – but the charging case doesn’t provide much additional juice. For comparison, the Apple AirPods contain 5 hours in the buds themselves, with an additional 20 provided by the charging case, for 25 hours in total. 

Like the originals, you’ll be able to charge the Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus wirelessly, while support for Bluetooth 5.0 means that these buds should have no problem pairing with, and staying connected to, your smartphone.

Better sound?

Samsung says that the new earbuds contain two speakers each, compared to the previous model, which only had one speaker per bud. 

This speaker array comprises one woofer and one tweeter, and should provide a bassier sound than the original Galaxy Buds; saying that, Samsung’s previous buds were already pretty bassy to begin with, so hopefully the new Galaxy Buds Plus can balance this with strong mid and treble frequencies.

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.