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Skullcandy's budget wireless earbuds are cheap AirPods alternatives

budget wireless earbuds
(Image credit: Skullcandy)

Skullcandy has announced its latest budget wireless earbuds, and they could be a super cheap alternative to the Apple AirPods.

Costing just $25 / £29.99 / AU$70, the Skullcandy Dime are a basic pair of true wireless earbuds that could be ideal if you're on a strict budget, want a backup pair of buds to sling in your bag, or want to try the form factor for the first time. 

Their low price is reflected in the specs; there's no active noise cancellation, though their noise-isolating design could stop some environmental sound from passing through the buds and ruining your music. 

Battery life isn't class-leading either, with the Skullcandy Dime offering just 12 hours of playback – that's 3.5 hours from the buds themselves, and a further 8.5 hours provided by the charging case. For comparison, the Apple AirPods will give you about 24 hours of playback (though they are significantly more expensive).

Value for money?

That's not to say that the Skullcandy Dime will be an inferior pair of true wireless earbuds. They offer Bluetooth 5 connectivity, which should ensure fast pairing times and a stable wireless connection with your devices. 

They also come with an IPX4 sweat and water resistance rating, which means you should be able to use them while working out, though you won't be able to take them into the shower with you afterwards. 

Coming in four different colors (dark blue/green, light grey/blue, dark grey and true black), the Skullcandy Dime are made with portability in mind. In fact, the charging case is about the same size as as a car key. 

In spite of their low price, the earbuds are backed by Skullcandy’s Fearless Use Promise, which means that, "if a user happens to lose or break any of the components, they can purchase buds and cases separately from Skullcandy to replace them with ease". 

It pays to be wary about budget wireless earbuds. There are countless brands available on Amazon and other online retailers that offer headphones for incredibly low prices – but Skullcandy is a well-known brand, and we've seen an increase in cheap wireless earbuds that offer a decent performance over the last couple of years. 

Models like the EarFun Air for example, took us by surprise, with excellent sound quality, design, and connectivity for the price. Whether the Skullcandy Dime will be able to match this performance for an even lower price remains to be seen, but we're certainly excited to find out.

Olivia Tambini

Olivia is TechRadar's Audio & Music Editor, covering everything from headphones to music streaming services. Based in TechRadar's London offices, 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, Top Ten Reviews Creative Bloq, and Croco Magazine.  In her spare time Olivia likes gardening, painting, and hanging with her cat Ethel and golden retriever Dora.