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Bose Ultra Open Earbuds debut with clip-on design

 

Bose today is launching an all-new pair of earbuds that are designed to be worn all-day. The new Ultra Open Earbuds are an entirely new type of way to listen to music, sporting a clip-on design that doesn’t even rest in your ear.

 

The new Bose Ultra Open Earbuds have a unique design that clips onto your ear instead of being wedged in. It ditches the usual silicone or memory foam ear tips in favor of a cuff design that just fits onto your outer ear. It’s a very different approach to really anything we’ve seen as of late and looks to offer a more comfortable fit for longer-term use.

Even the most comfortable earbuds out there will inevitably have you needing a little relief, and so Bose is scrapping those usual designs altogether. The earbuds are designed to help you stay in touch with the world around you instead of completely blocking it out. Bose has plenty of options in its portfolio for more immersive listening experiences but is looking to branch out with a pair of buds that are nowhere near as isolating as your typical ANC-backed alternatives.

All-day wear is the target here, and Bose is delivering 7.5 hours of playback at a time. That’s not quite enough for an entire day, but it does get you through most of a workday. Using the brand’s Immersive Audio mode will cut that down to 4.5 hours on a single listening session. But that’s if you’re actually listening to anything. The earbuds have up to 48 hours of standby battery life, so you can leave them clipped onto your ear throughout the day even if you’re not actually blasting tunes or on a call. There’s an extra 19.5 hours from the charging case, too.

The Bose Ultra Open Earbuds were originally launched as a fun collaboration with the fashion and lifestyle brand Kith. But now, you can actually buy them. The earbuds are on sale today for $299 at Amazon and direct from Bose. At launch, there are two designs available: Black and White.

For $299, there are, of course, some trade-offs that make these a little less compelling compared to others at the same price point. There’s no multipoint connectivity yet, nor will you find wireless charging with the stock case.

This isn’t the first time that we’ve seen earbuds with this same open focus. Back in 2022, Sony launched its LinkBuds with the same use case in mind. Sony’s alternative did take a different approach to letting you hear your surroundings, with a ring-shaped driver that naturally let sound merge with whatever audio was pumping out of the earbuds. But those were still in-ear buds. Bose is ditching that entirely with the Ultra Open Earbuds.

These feel a lot more like an extension of the Bose Frames than just being a traditional pair of earbuds. Normal buds are meant to be in your ear when you’re listening to something, and back in the charging case when you’re not. The Ultra Open, on the other hand, is designed from the ground up to always be clipped onto your ears. The fresh form-factor and battery life helps achieve that feat, making the latest from Bose a unique new addition to the world of wearable tech.

9to5Toys’ Take

I am all about funky and unique earbuds, and so you can consider me excited about the new Bose Ultra Open. I just bought a pair for myself, and will be excited to see what all of the fuss is about. I loved daily driving Sony’s LinkBuds back when they launched, and so I am excited to see how everything with Bose’s take on the open-back earbuds actually performs.

They should arrive before the weekend, so expect a hands-on review in the coming weeks.


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