These new wireless earbuds could be a cheap alternative to the Apple AirPods Pro

Skullcandy promo
(Image credit: Skullcandy)

Skullcandy has launched its first true wireless earbuds with active noise cancellation, and they’re cheaper than you might expect. 

Called Indy ANC, the new earbuds will be the first to use Skullcandy’s active noise cancelling (ANC) technology to offer users both a noise-cancelling and ambient mode, two popular features we’ve seen from the AirPods Pro (known as transparency mode on the latter). 

They’ll also last up to 19 hours with ANC on, says the company, which would be significantly longer than the 4 to 5-hour charge provided by Apple’s premium earbuds if that refers to the onboard battery life.

However, if that 19 hours includes the wireless charging case as well, that figure is far less impressive.

What is impressive is their price – the Indy ANC will retail for £99.99 in the UK, and cost $129.99 in the US, having been launched there at the end of 2020. Australian pricing and availability is still to be announced, but that works out at around AU$210.

That makes them a mighty $120 /£150 cheaper than their Apple counterparts.

Of course, we haven’t yet been able to test the Indy ANC to see if their comparable features can compete with the quality of those found in the AirPods Pro, but SkullCandy’s newest wireless earbuds look set to come with a host of other useful bits and bobs, too. 

Bells and whistles

In addition to noise cancelling and ambient options, the Indy ANC will feature three different listening modes – optimized for music, movies and podcasts – and offer customization options via the Skullcandy app to enable users to develop their personal sound profile. 

They’ll also come with IPX4 sweat and water resistance, and operate via a supposedly lag-free connection, meaning they could make great running earbuds, too.

Skullcandy promo

(Image credit: Skullcandy)

Interestingly, the company has suggested that the enhanced fit of the earbuds will allow them to be used solo, meaning you can opt to only have one in your ear at any given time without the music stopping. It’s a rare feature among wireless earbuds, though you can do this with the AirPods Pro, too.

Skullcandy has also partnered with tracking service Tile to make the Indy ANC easy to find should you misplace them. Tile is a tiny Bluetooth tracker and easy-to-use app that links to your earbuds, offering a handy incentive to those with a habit of forgetting where they put things. 

Axel Metz
Phones Editor

Axel is TechRadar's UK-based Phones Editor, reporting on everything from the latest Apple developments to newest AI breakthroughs as part of the site's Mobile Computing vertical. Having previously written for publications including Esquire and FourFourTwo, Axel is well-versed in the applications of technology beyond the desktop, and his coverage extends from general reporting and analysis to in-depth interviews and opinion.  Axel studied for a degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick before joining TechRadar in 2020, where he then earned an NCTJ qualification as part of the company’s inaugural digital training scheme.