Anker’s Smart Audio Brand, Zolo, Announces Liberty+ Wireless Earphones to Take on Apple’s AirPods

I’m a massive, massive fan of Apple’s AirPods. I posted a first impressions piece when they got dropped off by FedEx and review a few days later after spending tons of time with them. Since then, I’ve been using AirPods daily and it’s wild how much such a super convenient technology has transformed how I consume audio content. It takes a matter of seconds to grab the case out of my pocket and pop one in my ear, which has resulted in a resurgence of listening to tons and tons of podcasts. That being said, there’s still areas of improvement left in the AirPods. The audio quality isn’t any better than what you’d get out of normal Apple wired EarPods, they don’t isolate outside noise at all, and the lack of external controls is a bigger hassle than it should be. What I’m getting at here is that even though I love AirPods, there’s still tons of room for innovation in the ultra-tiny wireless earbud world. From the looks of it, Anker, through their smart audio brand Zolo, is taking a pretty decent crack at upping the ante with their new Liberty+ wireless earphones.

They have a similar charging case to AirPods, but theirs sports 48 hours of battery. The Liberty+ has an LDS antenna, which the video mentions is the same technology used by drones, which in theory should result in better connectivity and range (two things which are already pretty ridiculous in AirPods). Additionally, they’re using graphene for the actual speakers inside of the earbuds, which Anker/Zolo is saying should result in significantly better sound quality. Overall, the Liberty+ is supposed to be a “zero compromise" device, which will be pretty nuts if they actually manage to pull that off.

They’re launching the Liberty+ through Kickstarter where you effectively just preorder your pair. Right now you can get them for $99, $59 cheaper than AirPods. When the Liberty+ actually launches, they’ll have an MSRP of $149, but it’s hard to say if they’ll ever actually sell for that- Anker stuff always seems to be discounted one way or another on Amazon.

Anyway, it just seemed worth a quick mention as we always get a great response whenever we post about new Anker batteries, and interest around AirPods has remained pretty high. If you don’t care about all the W1 magic AirPods do with iOS, or just want to save some cash, the Liberty+ seem like something worth having on your radar.