Skullcandy banks on hands-free voice control for its new earbuds and headphones


The brand new Skullcandy Grind Gasoline.

David Carnoy/CNET

With so many new wi-fi earbuds and headphones being launched on what appears possible a weekly foundation, it is not straightforward for firms to distinguish their merchandise within the market. Skullcandy hopes its new voice-driven platform, Cranium-iQ Good Function Expertise, will do exactly that. Just like the Apple AirPods’ “Hey Siri” function, Skullcandy’s model lets you say “Hey, Skullcandy” to concern hands-free voice instructions with out touching a button. Cranium-iQ debuts on the Grind Fuel ($100, which converts to roughly £70 or AU$130) and Push Active ($80) true-wireless earbuds, which will likely be firmware updatable through the Skullcandy App. The brand new earbuds can be found now.

I attempted out the brand new buds and the voice instructions work easily with little delay. The variety of instructions you’ll be able to concern is restricted and targeted on music playback, accepting and rejecting calls and toggling on the earbuds’ Keep-Conscious transparency mode. One of many key variations over the AirPods hands-free Siri is the flexibility to entry Spotify by merely saying “Hey Skullcandy, Spotify.” The AirPods haven’t got voice-activated Spotify Faucet entry.

Extra earbuds will acquire hands-free voice management within the close to future, however Skullcandy is the primary to supply it at this modest worth. The Utah-based firm has at all times appealed to youthful and extra “lively” folks: It hopes the voice options will likely be a success with people who do sports activities like snowboarding, mountain biking and skateboarding, and who’ll admire having hands-free management. 

Each the Grind Gasoline and Push Lively True earbuds are outfitted with Bluetooth 5.2, are IP55 splashproof and have built-in Tile Discovering Expertise. The Grind Gasoline is rated for as much as 9 hours of battery life at reasonable quantity ranges and its case costs wirelessly. The Push Lively True is rated for as much as 10 hours of battery life on a single cost at reasonable quantity ranges. 


The Push Lively are $80.

David Carnoy/CNET

In all, I used to be extra impressed with the brand new options than I anticipated to be (Skullcandy says extra options and new voice-command choices will likely be added through firmware updates). I am much less of an ear-hook man and like the design of the Grind Gasoline, which delivers first rate sound for the cash and looks as if a great worth at $100. At $80, the Push Lively True is a extra reasonably priced different to the Beats Powerbeats Professional. | Skullcandy banks on hands-free voice management for its new earbuds and headphones


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