Google's second try at wireless earbuds is going a lot better than its first attempt, but that doesn't mean the Pixel Buds are perfect. Users have complained of issues like random disconnects and audio cutting out from the start. Google tried to address some of these bugs in last month's feature drop, and now the company is rolling out a new firmware update that should fix a very specific kind of audio cutout.
It's taken months for all the colors to fall into place — almost four months, in fact — but the Google Store is now shipping the second-generation Pixel Buds in Just White, Oh So Orange, Quite Mint, and Almost Black to customers in the United States.
The second-generation Pixel Buds debuted a couple of months ago. We walked away unable to recommend them, but these wireless earbuds are getting a few new features today that will hopefully improve the experience a bit. They include bass boost, sharing detection, and a few others. Plus, some fixes have been implemented to hopefully alleviate the connectivity issues some have been experiencing.
Google released the second generation of its Pixel Buds earlier this year in the US. Despite being a significant step forward from the first gen, there were still numerous issues that make them hard to recommend. Now they're getting a little better thanks to new features to help find misplaced earbuds — and they aren't the only Fast Pair-enabled accessories showing up in the Find My Device app.
The Pixel Buds have only just launched in Canada, the UK, and many more international markets, but the good news don't stop there: Google promises a feature drop update to the true wireless earbuds, according to information the company relayed to Forbes. Along with unspecified new capabilities, the update is supposed to finally fix the notorious audio cut out problems the Buds are plagued with, which Google already promised a month ago.
It was all the way back in October 2019 when the 2nd-generation Pixel Buds were revealed at Google's big annual hardware event, which seems like such a long, long time ago now. It wasn't until April this year that customers in the US could get their hands on a pair, and until today there's been no availability outside the States. If you live in Canada, the UK, or one of several other lucky countries, you should now be able to make an order.
The new Pixel Buds have plenty going for them: they're modern and sleek, they sound nice, and their Android integration is top-notch. But a quick glance at the Pixel Buds support forums shows tons of reports of connectivity problems. The good news is that Google is aware of these issues and a fix is on the way — eventually.
It's been a month and change since Google launched its first true wireless earbuds. When I first got my hands on the Pixel Buds, I was struck by their fit and finish, comfort, and sound quality, but nagging problems like audible interference at low volumes and short battery life left me feeling lukewarm on the whole. I've been using them regularly ever since, but unfortunately, my opinion hasn't changed: there are too many compromises in the 2020 Pixel Buds to justify their price for most buyers.
Google's newly released Pixel Buds 2 will get feature drop updates similar to the last two released for Pixels, according to a report from Forbes. There are no details yet on what sort of features we can look forward to, and no schedule for these updates has been provided.
Google is updating its Fast Pair protocol with new accommodations for true wireless earbuds. Some of these changes were first tipped back at Google I/O 2019, but with today's launch of the second-generation Pixel Buds, it would probably be the most apt time to introduce some features tailored specifically towards that type of Bluetooth accessory.