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B&W’s first true wireless headphones have a workaround for in-flight entertainment

Bowers and Wilkins’ debut pair of noise cancelling true wireless earbuds, the PI7, fix one of the key annoyances with the form-factor — it’s usable with in-flight entertainment systems because the case doubles as an audio transmitter. Plug the case into an audio source using an included 3.5mm to USB-C cable and it will retransmit the audio wirelessly to the earbuds. Alongside it, Bowers and Wilkins has also announced the cheaper PI5 true wireless headphones, which also offer noise-cancellation.

Bowers and Wilkins claims the PI7’s transmitting case is an industry first, and it’s certainly the first time we’ve heard of such a feature. In contrast, trying to use other popular true wireless earbuds like the AirPods Pro with a plane’s built-in entertainment system requires a third-party dongle. Of course, the PI7’s transmitting case should also work with any other non-Bluetooth devices you own, like an old iPod.

The PI5 true wireless earbuds.
Image: Bowers and Wilkins

The PI7 headphones in their charging case, which doubles as a wireless transmitter.
Image: Bowers and Wilkins

Beyond the PI7’s fancy case, it offers a fairly standard set of features for a pair of true wireless headphones. The earbuds are noise cancelling, and are equipped with six microphones in total for calls or using voice assistants. It uses the AptX Adaptive standard, which should allow it to dynamically compress audio to maintain a stable connection, and its case can be charged wirelessly. The earbuds themselves

Article source: https://www.theverge.com/2021/4/21/22395276/bowers-and-wilkins-pi7-pi5-true-wireless-earbuds-noise-cancelling-in-flight-entertainment-price

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