At a time when smartphone makers are trying to entice users to upgrade to the latest and greatest models every year, Fairphone has made a name for itself with a Android smart phone designed to be easily repaired and upgraded to extend its life for years, and now the company is applying that same philosophy to a pair of wireless headphones.
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This isn’t Fairphone’s first audio product. This honor goes to his True wireless stereo headphones, which promised to be a more eco-friendly option in a product category considered one of the worst examples of e-waste. The typical design nature of headphones requires batteries with a limited lifespan, and headphones are usually assembled using glue instead of screws, making them nearly impossible to take apart and repair. Although the Fairphone True Wireless Stereo Earbuds were made from “30% recycled plastics” and claimed to be “100% e-waste neutral” by the company, they will still suffer the same fate as other products from Fairphone. headphones when their batteries no longer hold a charge.
The new Fairphone XL wireless on-ear headphones are more in line with the Android smartphones. The company claims they’re “among the most durable headphones on the market” and are made from 100% recycled aluminum for their structural elements, such as where the headband connects to the earcups. 100% recycled plastic is also used “in all parts where it can be used”. As environmentally friendly as recycled plastic can be, it loses some of its strength and flexibility during the recycling process and is not ideal for all components, such as a headband that is constantly flexed.
The Fairphone XL can also be easily taken apart without requiring the skills of a brain surgeon, and makes it easy to replace parts that inevitably wear out with use, such as the ear cushions or even the 30-hour rechargeable battery. hours and 800 mAh of headphones.
They may not be breaking new ground in terms of headphone performance and features, but the Fairphone XL seems to deliver everything we’ve come to expect from wireless on-ear headphones. They contain 40 millimeter drivers, active noise cancellation with ambient sound boost mode, multipoint Bluetooth connection to easily switch between two devices, foldable design, audio tuning by Sonarworks, and IP54 weather resistance. That last part means a little rain won’t hurt them, but a full soaking would require most electronics to be replaced. Fairphone has even developed a mobile app allowing users to make EQ adjustments, download software upgrades, and even order replacement parts as needed.
THE Fairphone XL headphones are available from today in two color variants: speckled green and speckled black, for €249 (there is no official US price as Fairphone products are not directly offered by US retailers), which equates to around $275.
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