OnePlus has just announced that it's working on a "Pro" version of its earbuds, seemingly following up on last year's OnePlus Buds and Buds Z. A release date for the new OnePlus Buds Pro or "Buds Pro Edition" (it's called both) wasn't mentioned in the announcement, but a handful of lucky testers can apply to check them out early. Applications close July 17th.
Not too much is known about the new earbuds, but the "Pro" moniker is likely meant to draw a parallel to Apple's Airpods Pro, which differentiate themselves from the base Pro-less model with the addition of ANC and a design that more firmly seals against your ear canal.
OnePlus may not have said much about the product, but it did reveal a timeline that could indicate a release will happen very soon. According to OnePlus, applications close July 17th, reviewers will be announced on the 21st, and devices will be shipped to testers as soon as July 22nd, with an embargo to follow at an as-yet-undetermined date. However, OnePlus also later states that "reviewers will receive devices around the official launch event date," so we could see a product launch before the end of the month. The Nord 2 is also set to launch on July 22nd, so it could be released then.
I was a fan of last year's OnePlus Buds, and I still use them regularly, though they aren't without their issues. While they're comfortable for my ear shape and sound great for that style of open pass-through earbud, Bluetooth connection quality is lacking, and touch controls are limited — two issues I hope the new Buds don't suffer.
Those that snag early access to the Buds Pro will need to write up their review within seven calendar days, and it sounds like OnePlus is only handing out 10 devices in total. If you'd like to toss your hat in the ring, OnePlus is selecting based on photography and writing skills, as well as prior experience. If you're interested, good luck, and you can apply here.