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Are the Galaxy Buds Live Worth It for Iphone Users?

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So you're thinking about buying Samsung’s new galaxy buds live for your iPhone but the biggest question is how well do they work if you don't own an android phone.

Well I’ve been using them with my iPhone for a week now, so I’ll give you not only the downsides and limitations but also a surprising benefit that I found that you gain if you have an iPhone.

I think for a lot of iOS users the galaxy buds might be a better buy than the AirPods but not for everyone.

The biggest one for me is the sound quality not only do the buds live sound better than the regular AirPods but they sound even better than the pros.

Is it a massive difference between Buds & Airpods?

No, but when I put my AirPod pros back into my ears yesterday after using these for a week, I could definitely tell the difference and I missed the rich sound that the lives give you with their 12 millimetre drivers.

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Are Galaxy Buds Live Expensive?

No they aren’t expensive, the buds live are about 70 dollars less than the AirPod pros and 30 less than the regular AirPods with the charging case but both of those could be purchased a little bit cheaper now.

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How many hours do the Galaxy buds last?

Battery life is also better rated at 8 hours for the buds and a total of 28 hours in the case if you have active noise cancellation disabled. A big benefit for me is that they don't stick out of your ears, I love the look it provides and they don't snag if I’m putting on a helmet a hat or anything else really.

If you're somebody who hates having the mini toothbrush or the hair dryer look sticking out of your ears or you just don't want to blend in with everybody else as AirPods the buds live are great.

They're also really comfortable for me but that will depend on your ears, they don't seal into your ear canal which helps compared to the buds plus so they're now about as comfortable as AirPods. I was also pleasantly surprised by how well they stay in my ears and if regular AirPods fall out for you these most likely will not because they do have those wing tips that you can actually change out to get a better seal which of course you can't do with standard AirPods. 

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Another thing that surprised me was how quickly and consistently they connected to my iPhone. The original buds were noticeably worse than the AirPods with that h1 chip but these are super quick. you do miss out on iCloud integration so you'll have to go into the settings of each iOS or mac device but the buds live do support multiple saved connections and they'll automatically disconnect from my phone if I select them from my mac's Bluetooth menu just like the AirPods.

I have to say that it's very interesting that Samsung went the opposite way of apple and when they added active noise cancellation they got rid of the in-ear seal design because of this the active noise cancellation can only remove frequencies lower than 700 hertz and to be honest unless you have a constant low noise without other medium and high frequency sounds, its kind of pointless. It will definitely get rid of my low ac vent sound but then my mind starts focusing in on the higher sounds and it's even more annoying and when I was mowing my lawn just a few days ago. It literally did nothing to enable the active noise cancellation.

So don't buy them for your iPhone instead of AirPod pros if you need active noise cancellation because of this the lives are more like the original AirPods just with a little boost probably added for marketing.

Now there is a plus sign if you like to listen to music but also be aware of your environment these are great for that just like the regular AirPods but with that you also get that same big amount of sound leakage if you turn the volume up.

Now let's talk about connectivity, software and a bonus for iPhone users. I’m so glad that Samsung has the galaxy buds app for iPhone and now they keep updating it.

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I set mine up using the app and everything connected quickly but it gave me a prompt to check the Bluetooth settings to make sure that both Bluetooth modes are connected which they weren't. This part is important as i noticed a glitch every once in a while my buds live wouldn't show up in the audio options but they did show up as connected in the galaxy buds app. I went into the settings and only the low power mode was connected so i had to manually connect to the normal mode to be able to use them. One of these times the normal mode wouldn't let me connect so I actually had to press and reset them and then reconnect. I did figure out that this was only happening if i was switching from an android device to my iPhone and apart from that it would work perfectly. So hopefully they'll fix this in firmware which you can thankfully also update using the iOS app and thankfully that app matches most of the features to android. now here are the things that you'll miss out on the biggest bummer for me is their notifications being read out loud. i love having Siri read my text with the AirPods you're just not going to get that. the same thing goes with Bixby on demand if you have a Samsung phone and if you want to use Bixby at all.

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You could still use Siri by setting up the customizable touch options to invoke your assistant. In those touch options you also won't have the option for one touch Spotify, now an alternative is just setting it for Siri and then asking her to play Spotify or anything else but that does take a little bit longer.

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Next is the gaming mode which lowers latency and almost matches AirPods in iOS since the galaxy buds also use AAC, there's no lag when you're watching videos but if you're playing a game the sound will be about a half a second off compared to about 150 milliseconds. So if you play a lot of games that's one area where the buds live won't do as good.

The last thing that I missed is the ability to quickly change Bluetooth to my AirPods by pressing on the stem. this is helpful if your phone auto connects to another Bluetooth device but with the buds live I have to pull out my phone in order to manually switch it back.

Now for the one benefit of using the lives with an iPhone they are surprisingly louder, i would say to get them to match with the volume on my S20 ultra. I have to lower my iPhone to just over one click lower, now they aren't quiet with the Samsung but I do appreciate having the extra boost when I’m listening to quieter YouTube videos or podcasts. Overall if you don't need hands-free Siri with the text readouts or the low latency in games. I think that the galaxy buds live absolutely destroyed the original AirPods.

Are galaxy buds better than AirPods?


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It's a little bit more tough comparing them to AirPods if you're using an iPhone especially if you want the active noise cancellation but if you don't need that or the hands-free Siri then the lower cost and better sounding quality is really intriguing and they work surprisingly well with your iPhone. I think that for many iPhone users the buds live will work quite well and I will definitely be using mine a fair bit.

If you have other reasons for getting them for your iPhone let me know down in the comments section below.


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