Best TWS: True Wireless Earphones in India

What are the best true wireless (TWS) earphones to buy in India right now? The options vary depending on your budget, and we’ve selected the best TWS cell phones across price ranges, key features, and specific requirements.

We’ve been seeing incredible innovation and growth in the wireless earphone segment, including big-ticket launches from premium brands like Apple and Samsung. This helped refresh the space a bit, which was much needed given the long product life cycles in the true wireless earphone segment. As a result, there are new launches across all categories and platforms, including some long-awaited successors to previous favourites.

Active noise cancellation continues to be an important feature that consumers look for when choosing true wireless earphones in all price segments including the affordable area, but new implementations in the form of advanced codec support and features built for specific devices and platforms continue to be a big trend. In part. We’ve refreshed our top picks across all price ranges for true wireless earphones, with new products from Apple, Samsung, and Oppo, among others. Here are our top picks.

How do true wireless earphones work?

Until the advent of true wireless technology, wireless headphones and earphones had some sort of connector between the left and right channels, either a cord or a headband. With true wireless earphones, even this short cable is gone, and each earbud has its own battery, DAC, amplifier and Bluetooth chip. The earbuds connect individually to the source device, or the dominant earbud is connected to the source and then connected to the second earbud to provide a digital signal.

In this way, each earphone is able to work independently, yet both work together to ensure that the listener receives stereo sound output from the source device. The obvious advantage of this arrangement is the convenience of completely wireless listening, which improves comfort and ease of use. This is beneficial in many usage situations, including while exercising, in crowded places, on your commute, or when you want to use your earphones while lying down.

True wireless earphones often include built-in microphones, making it possible to use them as hands-free devices with your smartphone. As long as the microphones are good enough to hear sound over long distances, this makes true wireless earphones a very smart and effective way to have phone conversations on the go. And while the extra components can make earbuds heavier than regular earphones, many new options have compact designs, are lightweight and don’t rely on winged tips or ear hooks to stay in place in your ears.

Best true wireless earbuds: Apple AirPods Pro (2nd Gen)

The long-awaited successor to the original Apple AirPods Pro, the second-generation variant sees a major improvement in the user experience. While the design and style of the earbuds haven’t changed much, the charging case gets smart new functionality, the controls see some upgrades, and the active noise cancellation and sound quality are much better.

All of this works best if you’re already in the Apple ecosystem, as you need an iOS device to be able to access and use some of the features. If you have an iPhone, you’ll be able to track the earbuds and charging case using the Find My service, charge the case wirelessly (even an Apple Watch charger works), and use Spatial Audio. You can access detailed controls and settings of the earphones through iOS as well.

On Android, earphones can be paired normally using Bluetooth, but many additional features are not available, making this a sensible choice only if you have an iPhone to use. However, the sonic signature is fantastic across the board, and the active noise cancellation on offer is among the best you can find in true wireless earphones right now. Although expensive, there is no better pair of true wireless earphones than AirPods Pro (2nd Gen), overall.

Buy: Apple AirPods Pro (2nd Gen)

The best true wireless earbuds for Android: Sony WF-1000XM4

The Sony WF-1000XM4 is a true wireless headset that is a true flagship in every sense, and it has one main feature that sets it apart from other similar products – support for the LDAC Bluetooth codec. This makes it particularly suitable for use with Android smartphones, and the sound quality on offer is among the best you can get with this form factor. Good ANC, a functional app, and other useful features make this a true wireless headset.

Although the fit feels a little precarious due to the size of the ears, and the custom control options are limited, the Sony WF-1000XM4 is among our top picks thanks to its LDAC support, which works stably and without connection problems. The sound is very detailed and enjoyable, making this perhaps the best pair of true wireless earphones you can buy right now – if you have an Android smartphone.

Buy: Sony WF-1000XM4

Best in sound quality: Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro

Arguably the best sounding true wireless earphones you can buy right now, the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro benefit from advanced Bluetooth codec support, great drivers and tuning, and excellent active noise cancellation. The sound is detailed, well-tuned, and overall enjoyable, especially with popular music genres.

This is due to the impressive Bluetooth codec, with the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro supporting the new 24-bit SSC Hi Fi Codec. Battery life is good too, and there’s Qi wireless charging in addition to USB Type-C fast charging.

The only reason why this isn’t our top choice among true wireless earphones (or for Android devices in general) is that access to that high sound quality requires a Samsung smartphone to be paired with the earphones. With everything else, the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro does not have its full potential unlocked. Although the app works on all Android devices, it is not available on iOS yet.

Buy: Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro

The best true wireless earbuds under Rs. 15,000: Oppo Enco X2

The Oppo Enco X2 is less expensive than its predecessor, but it remains a value proposition as an alternative in the true wireless earphones space. The price of Rs. 10,999, this is a headset that challenges more expensive rivals, and still comes out on top. With great ANC and excellent sound quality for the price, there isn’t a better mid-range option right now.

Much of this depends on the driver’s setup; The Oppo Enco X2 has a dual driver setup, which is still a rarity in true wireless earphones. There’s also LHDC and LDAC Bluetooth codec support, as well as good active noise cancellation, app support, and native customization and settings on select devices including OnePlus and Oppo devices. Perhaps the only drawback of this headset is the average battery life, but the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages of the Oppo Enco X2.

Buy: Oppo Enco X2

Inexpensive true wireless earphones: Oppo Enco Air 2 Pro

True budget earphones often come with active noise cancellation, and the Oppo Enco Air 2 Pro is one of the best you can buy under Rs. 5,000 for this feature. The price of Rs. 3,499, the Enco Air 2 Pro is impressive for a number of reasons, including its sleek design and fit, app support, great ANC performance for the price, and clean and aggressive sound.

This is a rounder in every sense, and our top pick among affordable headsets. Although the battery life is average, and the sound is a little noisy at very high volume levels, the advantages of the Oppo Enco Air 2 Pro outweigh the drawbacks. This is a value-for-money offering in every way, delivering much higher performance than the price suggests.

Buy: Oppo Enco Air 2 Pro

How we picked the best true wireless earphones

We’ve reviewed or used a variety of true wireless headphones, including popular options from major electronics manufacturers, as well as options from mainstream audio brands that have been in the headphone and earphone business for years. We also considered specifications, codec support and pricing to come up with our top recommendations.

True wireless earphones form a new product segment, and we had the opportunity to test many new options. Aside from the earphones themselves, we’ve also taken note of the charging cases that go with these options. Cases often provide additional battery backup, and make for a convenient and safe way to carry your headphones when you’re not working. With all these points in mind, we have selected our list of top recommendations, as well as other options that you should check out as listed below.

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Also consider these truly wireless earbuds

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3: The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 is a bundle of premium-grade entertainment and worth considering, but it feels a little expensive compared to competing options.

Google Pixel Buds Pro: Google’s answer to AirPods Pro, the Google Pixel Buds Pro is a true wireless headset, but is held back by a lack of advanced Bluetooth codec support.

Sony LinkBuds S (WF-LS900N): One step below the flagship WF-1000XM4, the Sony LinkBuds S (WF-LS900N) is almost as good, but at a somewhat more affordable price.

Realme Buds Air 3 Neo: While far from exclusive, these true wireless earbuds from Realme are decent value for money, and a great first step into the TWS form factor.

Jabra Elite 85t, Jabra’s latest wireless headset comes at a price Rs. 17,999, and it’s a more advanced one but with good sound, good ANC, and all-around performance. It is a bit expensive, compared to the excellent Oppo Enco X.

OnePlus Buds Z2, price of Rs. 4,999 In India, the OnePlus Buds Z replacement features active noise cancellation and delivers crisp, pleasant sound, making this a worthy choice under Rs. 5,000 especially if you have a OnePlus smartphone.

Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro: Samsung’s true wireless headset is an excellent choice with advanced codec support and excellent all-round sound quality. Rs. 10,000 – if you can get used to the tricky design and fit.

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