Bullets Wireless are stylish Bluetooth earphones designed by OnePlus
The OnePlus 6 was announced today and its product page has already gone live here (and so has our initial hands-on review), but the smartphone won’t be the only new OnePlus device that’ll be coming. No, the company isn’t launching another variant of their latest flagship smartphone. Instead, they’re launching a new model of their Bullets line of earphones. Bullets Wireless are the first wireless, Bluetooth-enabled earphones from OnePlus, and they’ll be available in the coming weeks.
OnePlus has offered audio accessories in the past (Bullets and Bullets V2), and the company says they have experimented with wireless earphones for the past two years. The reason OnePlus is launching the Bullets Wireless has little to do with the OnePlus 6 smartphone launch – it’s not like OnePlus needs to compensate for anything since the OnePlus 6 still offers a standard 3.5mm headphone jack. Instead, it’s because they feel comfortable releasing the product now that the technologies behind Bluetooth audio streaming and battery have advanced to the point where users will have a great audio experience without having to reach for a charger every few hours.
Bullets Wireless Battery Life
With any Bluetooth-enabled earphone, battery life is one of the most important aspects for the product to nail. OnePlus promises eight-hour battery life overall which doesn’t sound too extraordinary at first, but according to OnePlus you’ll be able to get five hours of continuous use from only 10 minutes of charging. That feat is possible thanks to integrated fast charging technology in Bullets Wireless. Unlike the OnePlus smartphones, however, the fast charging circuit is embedded into the earphones, so you don’t need to use the proprietary OnePlus charging brick to take advantage of fast charging. Any standard USB-C cable can be used with Bullets Wireless. We’re told that the earphones are not using USB Power Delivery (PD) for charging, though.
Lastly, to help preserve battery life when the earphones aren’t in use, the Bullets Wireless will automatically turn off after five minutes of inactivity. That’s a pretty standard feature of Bluetooth earphones, but it’s still helpful to know that you won’t have to remember to shut off the earphones when you need to quickly take them out of your ears to start a conversation with someone or listen to your surroundings.
Bullets Wireless Sound Quality
While audio quality remains superior on wired headphones and earphones, audio quality on Bluetooth-enabled devices has much improved over the years. Innovations in the Bluetooth standard leading to higher throughput and newer Bluetooth audio codecs that are able to deliver quality audio over limited bandwidth are what have driven the increase in Bluetooth audio quality across the board. The Bullets Wireless support Qualcomm’s proprietary aptX Bluetooth audio codec for high-quality audio output, so you can stream your music or podcasts with crisp-sounding audio and minimal distortions.
But OnePlus isn’t relying solely on Bluetooth software advancements to deliver great audio quality on Bullets Wireless. OnePlus says the earphones can deliver high-quality audio from a range of frequencies thanks to a combination of a large moving coil driver unit of 9.2mm with “Energy Tubes.” Energy Tubes, according to OnePlus are structures within the earphones that minimize reverberation of frequencies and noise generation to produce clear audio output.
Bullets Wireless Design
Having to pack a Bluetooth chip and long-lasting battery can result in an unwieldy earphone, but OnePlus has designed the Bullets Wireless to be lightweight and thus comfortable to wear for hours on end. The cables are designed to be stretch resistant, and the liquid silicone coating of the earphones provides some water resistance as well. The earbuds are interchangeable in case one pair wears out or you need to swap around a few until you find the best fit.
The in-line controls of the earphones feature volume adjustment keys and a multi-function key that, when long-pressed, triggers the Google Assistant. If you own a OnePlus 5, OnePlus 5T, or the new OnePlus 6, then you won’t have to fiddle with the buttons or pull out your phone to play or pause your music or podcasts. Instead, when the earbuds are magnetically snapped together, media playback is automatically paused, and conversely when the earbuds are unclipped media playback is automatically resumed. OnePlus says a future update will allow for answering phone calls by unclipping the earbuds.
Bullets Wireless Pricing and Availability
The Bullets Wireless will be available by end of June on OnePlus.com for a price of £69 / $69 / €69. For those of you who prefer wired earphones, the Bullets V2 will still be available for purchase. OnePlus’ new wireless Bluetooth-enabled earphones are yet another offering from the company designed to enhance your OnePlus smartphone experience, though there’s nothing stopping you from using these earphones with a smartphone from another manufacturer.