Microsoft announced Wednesday that its new Surface Headphones and Surface Earbuds will be out May 12.
While the Headphones are the newest version of a product Microsoft launched a few of years agone, the earbuds are the company’s initial real AirPods competition.
The Surface Earbuds are interesting because they travel a slightly different road than AirPods or the recently released Pixel Buds. Obviously you can use them to listen to music, but Microsoft is pushing them as work-friendly wireless earbuds. They tie into Microsoft’s Office software, allowing for dictation and moving through slides in PowerPoint, among other things.
I tried them at a preview event in October and was impressed with the general sound and physical design. That said, they lack noise cancellation of any kind. At $200, they’re more expensive than standard AirPods but cheaper than AirPods Pro.
As for the new Surface Headphones, they’re a little more expensive at $250. Microsoft claims they have up to 20 hours of listening time and 13 levels of outside noise control, putting them in stark contrast to the Surface Earbuds.
The world isn’t really lacking for wireless earbuds and over-ear headphones right now, but if you’re unsatisfied with the other options out there, Microsoft’s new products might be worth a look.