Many companies are trying to crack the wireless, in-ear headphones market. Apple's AirPods are probably the best known versions, but there are numerous alternatives available, not forgetting the competition from 'neckbuds'-style headphones, such as the Bose SoundSport Wireless.
Smartphone accessory manufacturer Anker is the latest to enter the market and, judging by the response to a Kickstarter project for its Zolo Liberty+ headphones, the company may be on the right track. The project has currently raised $681,939, easily surpassing its $50,000 goal in just one day.
The Zolo range is part of Anker's new smart audio brand, which aims to beat competitors in four main areas - sound quality, comfort, Bluetooth connection and battery life. The last one is particularly important for Anker, which has made its name through its smartphone battery packs.
The Liberty+ in-ears have 3.5 hours of standalone battery, but its casing has a 48-hour battery life and can be charged via Micro USB.
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Anker has streamlined the Bluetooth 5.0 pairing process down to one single button push, and the headphones will automatically pair with your smartphone once taken out of the case - making them a clear challenger to Apple's W1 chip.
The Zolo Liberty+ headphones will also support all four major digital voice assistants: Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, Google Assistant and Microsoft’s Cortana.
With many in-ear wireless headphones falling down on audio quality - Motorola's Verve Ones+ and Elyxr's Air both had lacklustre sound - Anker believes its 6mm graphene drivers give these in-ears a superior performance. We look forward to putting them through their paces.
Anker hopes the headphones will be ready for shipping by November, and you can still support it for $100 (£80). However, as with all Kickstarter projects, it's worth proceeding with a bit of caution.
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