London-based tech brand Nothing is set to launch its first true wireless earbuds on 27th of July, and now we know more about them. The Nothing Ear (1) will sport a transparent design, feature active noise-cancelling and cost £99/$99 (around AU$140).
"Because we’re primarily going to be focused on online sales channels, we are going to be able to [make it] — I wouldn’t say ‘affordable,’ but quite a fair price to consumers,” Nothing founder Carl Pei told TechCrunch (opens in new tab).
"I think it’s going to be a good price at $99 USD, €99 Euros and £99," he added."Feature-wise, it’s similar to the AirPods Pro, but the AirPods Pro is $249,”
Chinese-born Swedish entrepreneur Pei previously founded smartphone giant OnePlus, before leaving to set up Nothing in 2020. The company's aim is to "tear up the rulebook", which could explain the unusual transparent design – a feature that Pei claims is "much more costly" than standard coloured material and has led to production delays.
Some have said the see-through styling could be a metaphor for 'crystal-clear' sound; others have suggested it could be Nothing's calling card, and that all of the company's upcoming hardware, including smartphones, will be transparent.
Of course, transparent products are nothing new. The 'clear craze' exploded in the 1980s and early 90s, spawning everything from see-through drinks (Tab Clear soda) to see-through tech (the transparent Nintendo Game Boy).
Despite today's development, the Nothing Ear (1) buds remain shrouded in mystery. There's still no word on battery life, Bluetooth support or IP rating, for example. Still, if they're going to be some 60 per cent cheaper than the Apple AirPods Pro, Nothing has our attention.
Will the Ear (1) make it onto our list of the best wireless earbuds? Only time will tell, but in the meantime, we'll bring you all the latest Ear (1) news ahead of the global launch on the 27th July.
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