Wireless earbuds seem to be everywhere now, bulky wires gone the way of the audio port. That goes double for the new Powerbeats, the new Apple earbuds that are meant to be a sporty alternative to AirPods. But Powerbeats are fairly pricey, especially for folks unaccustomed to the jacked-up pricing of wireless listening tech. No wonder, because one look at Apple's official store reveals that the now vintage EarPods are $29.99 -- in comparison to the average $200 at which the Powerbeats currently retail. If you're a penny-pinching tech lover, that price difference is a steep premium to pay for a few moments as part of the tech "it" crowd.
When Beats released the truly wireless Powerbeats Pro last year, it was a kind of dream product for Beats fans. Except for the downside of its bulky charging case, the Powerbeats Pro were essentially AirPods on steroids, with richer, more dynamic sound and better battery life -- and they stayed in your ears more securely, particularly during athletic activities. Now Beats is going retro on us and bringing back the standard "wired/wireless" Powerbeats. These are basically the Powerbeats Pro but there's a cord between the buds, which are still wireless to the phone. They run $150, or $100 less than the list price of the Powerbeats Pro.
Beats by Dre's Powerbeats earphones have been a mainstay in the wireless headphone genre for years, and things have only gotten more interesting since Apple took over. With the Powerbeats Pro, Beats stepped into the true wireless market alongside other fully wireless earbuds like Apple's own AirPods, offering impressive new features and the best sound from Beats earbuds yet. Enter the Powerbeats, which knock a full $100 off the price of their "Pro" sibling, while offering most of the same features. Unlike the Powerbeats Pro, the Powerbeats are connected by a small wire, similar to 2016's Powerbeats3, and other models. There are other differences too, so read on to get the goods on what's new in the latest Powerbeats, what's missing, and which pair is right for you.
Just to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission. Wired headphones are fine if you live in the past, never exercise, or have a personal butler who untangles everything for you. But for the rest of us, it's time to upgrade to the wonderful world of wireless headphones. There are many great wireless Bluetooth headphones to choose from but few match the stellar performance, battery life, and price of the TREBLAB XR500 Wireless Sport Earbuds. The XR500s are the perfect gym companion.
Reports may have tipped Apple's hand last week, but it was really only a matter of time before the company made a true wireless option that carried the Beats name. And thanks to a hint in iOS code, we knew they'd look very similar to their corded, but still wireless, predecessor. There was little left to announce, and today, Beats officially revealed the Powerbeats Pro: the previously rumored pair of $250 true wireless earbuds. Indeed, the Powerbeats Pro has the same over-the-ear hook design as the Powerbeats 3 Apple and Beats debuted in 2016. Since these are designed for workouts and other activities, that hook helps keep the buds in place while you're moving around.