Palm pivots to audio with $129 ANC true wireless earbuds

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Three years after releasing a teensy phone designed to act as a companion for your primary device, the latest incarnation of Palm is back with a new product: a set of true wireless earbuds. Former designers from Beats by Dre and Samsung created the Palm Buds Pro.

Palm says it researched which features consumers want most from wireless earbuds, and it seems to have checked off a lot of the right boxes here. Buds Pro has active noise cancellation, bass-heavy audio with 10mm dynamic drivers and an array of six microphones that can tamp down background noise on calls. When the passthrough Ambient Mode is enabled, you’ll be able to hear both audio playback and sounds from the world around you.

An image showing the three microphones in each Palm Buds Pro earbud.

Palm

The battery will run for up to 5.5 hours or, if ANC is enabled, 4.5 hours, Palm says. The earbuds should be good for three hours of talk time. The charging case has a 400 mAh battery, which should provide the earbuds with over 24 hours of playback time before you have to recharge the case, according to Palm. 

There’s also fast pairing and syncing with devices, IPX4 sweat and water resistance and support for Siri and Google Assistant. In addition, the earbuds come with three sets of tips to help you find the best fit.

A person wearing a Palm Buds Pro earbud.

Palm

Perhaps the most impressive aspect of the Palm Buds Pro at the outset is how much they cost. The earbuds will be $129 at retail, which is a solid price for a set of ANC earbuds. If you pre-order by November 9th (when general availability starts), you can get a $30 discount. 

Pre-orders are now open in the US, Canada and Mexico on Palm’s website. Palm will ship the earbuds internationally to select markets. There’s also a silicone case accessory in Shadow Black, Rose Pink and Navy Blue. The case is $15 during the pre-order period. It’ll typically cost $25.

It remains to be seen how good Palm Buds Pro are in practice. Even though we weren’t huge fans of the Palm Phone, there’s a strong design pedigree behind the earbuds, so they might very well be worth checking out.

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