Are you laughing at my 99 Cent Store Bluetooth wireless headphones? I’m crying at how much you paid for your crappy ‘PowerBeats’.
My cousin threw his PowerBeats2 Wireless In-Ear Headphones into the trash. He told me to immediately return mine. They stopped pairing properly, and didn’t even stay in his ears.
They were useless. That’s $150 you can’t get back.
I ignored that advice. Three weeks later, I’m trying to glue the right earbud together with epoxy in my kitchen. All the while trying not to accidentally glue the on/off switch. Total crap — and I’m sadly not alone in that assessment.
But it’s not just Beats…
I’d say it’s a Beats problem, but it’s more accurately a wireless Bluetooth headphone problem. I’ve heard Beats’ new ‘W1’ third-generation wireless headphones are pretty good, so maybe I’ll come around. The only problem: I don’t want to blow $200-$350 to learn another hard lesson.
So maybe other brands are figuring this out?
I’m not so sure. Motorola — a high-quality brand —sent me a pair of their in-ear, VerveOnes+ wireless earbuds. They look totally revolutionary, nobody knows what they are. Finally, I had something that nobody else had!
Only problem: they’re the worst earbuds I’ve ever owned. They fall out in workouts, they stop pairing, and the two sides fall out of sync. And all within the first month.
They also cost $250. I’m also going to throw them in the trash.
And Apple, the brand that used to solve our problems, is plunging us headlong into the biggest problem of our modern music lives. The AirPod isn’t arriving by Christmas for a reason. And what is that reason? The entire company realized they were about to drop the crappiest product in Apple’s history on the world.
Now, they’re figuring a way out of that. But have fun with your crappy iPhone 7 adapter in the meantime.
Let’s face it: wireless Bluetooth headphones f–king suck. And we’re all suckers for paying hundreds of dollars for this scam.
So what’s wrong with wireless, Bluetooth headphones?
1. Bluetooth is an inferior technology.
For starters, Bluetooth itself is an inferior connectivity technology. It’s a wireless solution in progress, and it almost always fails. I used to think the car was a safe space for pairing Bluetooth. Now I realize that in-dash Bluetooth connections are equally prone to wretched failure.
2. Wireless headphones aren’t ready for prime time.
Bluetooth wireless headphones should still be in a lab somewhere. Not on our ears. These companies should be ironing out the problems instead of charging us $300 for products that don’t work. We’re not guinea pigs!
(Note: I’ll reserve judgment on the Beats’ W1, but my expectations aren’t high).
3. Competition/profit pressures are screwing consumers.
None of these companies want to be left behind. That’s how people get fired inside suffocating groupthink tech giants. Add the relentless pressure to make a profit, and the result is a half-baked product push.
So instead of waiting and making it great, headphones are entering a dark age of wireless blah. And you’re paying $300 for a front row seat.
Which is why I recommend these ‘Art+Sound’ brand wireless headphones, available at 99 Cent Stores.
Technically, it’s the 99 Cents Only Store — but commonly called the ’99 Cents Store’ by the locals. Enter ‘Art+Sound,’ which just figured out a way to deliver a working, wireless Bluetooth-enabled pair of headphones for $5.99. No, they’re not 99-cents. But someone is actually delivering a working pair of wireless Bluetooth headphones for under $6.
Here’s a rundown of how they performed.
The sound quality?
Pretty bad! But, absolutely great if you need something to sweat into, stuff into a gym bag, or use in bad weather or messy environments. And never worry about.
I workout to ‘Insanity’ from my iPad. I need to hear the guy yelling out stuff and some background music. This does that perfectly.
Not so good! My girlfriend said I sounded distant (sure, she was talking about the headphones…)
Very average! I could pair my iPhone no problem, but couldn’t connect to my MacBook. Then again, that sounds like every other Bluetooth device I own. The bar is that low. So for $6…
Non-existent! The box says ‘Extra Bass’. That would be hyperbolic.
Not bad! 4 hours+.
Extremely high. And that’s the best part. If these get stolen, crushed, water-logged, etc., you definitely won’t care.
Extremely low! You will not get laid wearing these. But, you WILL have extra cash to spend on someone you’re attracted to. So think big picture.
There’s also a 3.5mm headphone jack, if you want to go wired. Not only that, the Art+Sound $5.99 Bluetooth Wireless Headphones come in an attractive box.
I’m not sure these are available at all 99 Cent Stores. I got mine on Pico Blvd. by the 405 freeway in Los Angeles. But call ahead.