I like Anker products I've rarely had a problem with anything bearing the brand, there's a wide range of products on offer, and they're usually top quality at a very good value.
The same can be said of the SoundBuds Flow, a fairly inexpensive pair of wireless earbuds that can be paired with anything capable of delivering audio over a Bluetooth output. The flashy brand names can be tempting, but you ignore these at your peril. (Unfortunately, they're not available in the U.S. right now, though.)
See at Amazon UK (opens in new tab)
Light, comfy and exercise ready
One of the big draws of wireless headphones is as an exercise companion. When you're working out, the last thing you want is a cable dangling from your ears flapping about as you move. Something like the SoundBuds Flow fixes that immediately, with a short cable that goes around the back of your neck. They're not truly "wireless," then, and there's an inline remote on the right bud for volume and playback controls.
The cable itself is very thin and you don't really notice it being there. My other wireless headphones, the Razer Hammerhead BT, I criticised for being too short, which leaves them pulling constantly as I move. No such problem with the SoundBuds. There's also a little clip in the box that you can use to attach to some clothing for added safekeeping and to help stop the remote pulling everything to the right.
They're incredibly light and comfortable. The buds themselves are angled into the ear canal for better fit and ultimately not horrible passive sound isolation. There's a little rubber hook, too, to grab your ear so they don't come out. There are different sized hooks and buds included in the box, along with a velvety-feeling carry bag.
I've been wearing these for multiple hours every day for over a week and they haven't fallen out of my ears once. I'm no sportsman, though, so I can't attest to the same success while running. But there's a tight fit and even just by gently tugging them with your hands they don't just give up and dive from your ears.
The added magic touch is that they're magnetic. So, when you want to stop listening you can keep them safe around your neck by wearing them like a necklace.
Quality product with a quality sound
As soon as you open the box you know this is a quality product. The SoundsBuds Flow is both stylish and exceptionally well made while retaining an understated look. Bright green sports earphones aren't for everyone or every occasion and these just look like, well, normal headphones.
Charging is achieved over micro USB (cable included) with a claimed battery life of around seven hours. I haven't been counting but using them a few hours each day I've been charging every couple of days so that would seem accurate. The Flow connects to your phone, tablet or laptop using Bluetooth 4.1 and the connection has been solid as a rock the whole time.
If you're the sporty kind, you'll be pleased to know that these earbuds are both water resistant and nano-coated to stand up to the rigors of exercise and rain.
But what about the sound? They're excellent. The 6mm drivers deliver a very clear, crisp sound that's very well-rounded and not at all bass heavy. Passive sound isolation isn't bad, so you can actually hear and enjoy your tunes and not just the sound of the world outside.
The bottom line on Anker SoundsBuds Flow
Anker has a variety of SoundBuds wireless earbuds (opens in new tab) available for $30 or less that appear to be variations on a theme. While this specific model isn't available in the U.S. right now, others are, and I'd wager that any of them will be as pleasing as the Flow.
If you can get the Flow, I've no problem recommending the set to anyone. I've had much more expensive headphones that sounded a lot worse than this. Throw in decent battery life, ridiculous comfort and the ability to stand up to a solid workout or two and you've definitely got a winner.
See at Amazon UK (opens in new tab)
Richard Devine is a Managing Editor at Windows Central with over a decade of experience. A former Project Manager and long-term tech addict, he joined Mobile Nations in 2011 and has been found on Android Central and iMore as well as Windows Central. Currently, you'll find him steering the site's coverage of all manner of PC hardware and reviews. Find him on Mastodon at mstdn.social/@richdevine
These are reportedly available at Walmart in the U.S.
A quick check of my Walmart app shows one on clearance for $10.29. Only one review, but it's a very detailed, scathing one star review. At that price it's pretty tempting, though.
Normally, if there's a bad review it's because the user doesn't have the ear buds completely sealed in the ear canal. I've seen this happen time and time again. I'm even guilty of it. I've been reviewing "in-ear" headphones for my own personal use for a few months now and have found many sets under $40 that blow away Apple's Airpods at 5 times the price. The trick is to make sure they're sealing in the ear. I even complained about my Shure 315's when I first got them and they were fairly expensive comparatively speaking. Once I got them fitting correctly they were fine. But I gotta say... There are lots of sets out there that will match them for a fraction of the cost.
I have the Anker Curve earbuds and I could not be happier. They sound great, and considering the price they sound amazing! It came with all kinds of accessories, including a pair of memory foam tips and a really nice leather carrying case. My only complaint is that the buttons are small and Anker didn't do much to differentiate between them. After having them for about three months I still find myself feeling around to make sure I have the button I'm looking for. It's a little frustrating but a compromise I'm willing to make because these things are nearly perfect in every other way.