Airpods (continued)

I wrote a post a couple days about how much I like Apple’s Airpods and that I was going to miss them as I head back to Android.

Well it is a good thing I wrote that post and an even better thing that so many smart and informed people read AVC.

If you wade into the comments section to that post, you will see quite a few comments explaining that Airpods can be used with Android as standard bluetooth headphones. I also got quite a few emails from readers explaining that same thing.

I tried that this morning and I worked like a charm. So I get to keep my Airpods as I move back to Android. I’m thrilled. Now if I could only keep iMessage too. Then I’d have everything that is better about iPhone on my Android.


Comments (Archived):

  1. kenberger

    I have found 2 more options that seem better than Airpod (for me, a non-iPhone user):Rowkin Bit Charge:…TINY but very good sound, fantastic design (see the link). Winner.Nuheara IQBuds: too are phone/laptop bluetooth earbuds, but ALSO they act as sort-of hearing aids, so if you’re in a dinner restaurant conversation, they make you hear better.This is exactly the use case that Fred once told me suited him!

    1. William Mougayar

      Wow those IQBuds seem amazing, but I choked at the price tag. $US 300 !!

      1. LIAD

        theres a bunch of basic bud-style ones on amazon. form factor not great. uncomfortable and feel quite heavy.

        1. William Mougayar

          yup, just saw this FocusPower F10 for $25 and it’s super light. I might try that before forking $300 on the IQ Buds.

      2. kenberger

        hmm, yes, the differentiator here is they are probably the only buds with active noise cancellation and enhancements, can do the hearing aid-like tricks because they are not (on-ear or over-ear) headphones.I know the founder from my Australia VC EIR days, it’s an Australian product.

        1. William Mougayar

          Hmm…i’m still choking 🙂

          1. kenberger

            well, the others i listed are pretty cheap, especially on (US delivery, which precludes me now), about ~$100.

          2. kenberger

            Agreed no need to get crazy expensive.But I’ve never succeeded getting any buds I didn’t regret, at less than ~$70-100. Performance and/or build almost always disappoints.And life is too short to not be thrilled!!

          3. William Mougayar

            another way to look at it, it’s less than .1 BTC 🙂 or 1 ETH. dirt cheap in crypto territory.

          4. kenberger

            but that’s IF one holds either of them, and on what day/month/year we’re talkin’ 😉

          5. jason wright

            and if Fred’s crash prediction is right…

          6. kenberger

            wait! forget my other price-related comment: Surely, Wm, you must be a crypto-ionaire by now ?? 😉

          7. William Mougayar

            making an announcement later today…

          8. Lawrence Brass

            another champagne bottle bites the dust… sabered. 🙂

          9. mplsvbhvr

            Saw the announcement before I saw this comment – Congrats!

    2. K_Berger

      Battery life seems pretty short.Maybe get two pairs and keep alternating.

  2. LIAD

    i followed Fred right off that cliff yesterday getting a pair of airpods to pair with my android thanks to the comments in that post.they don’t have full functionality but good, if they’ll only start making them in black.

  3. William Mougayar

    I’m waiting for the implantable version that will be compatible with everything,To think that Apple would have made their AIrpods not compatible with other bluetooth devices would have been a step too far with their obsession in being proprietary.

    1. jason wright

      i’m waiting too. you first.

      1. William Mougayar

        I am scheduled already for January 22nd 2022

  4. awaldstein

    You schlepp your Bose QC35s on this trip Fred?I almost can’t leave home without them. The geek on the subway with them on his head.

    1. kenberger

      Sony MDR’s have better sound, functionality and comfort (albeit negligible on that last one) at about same price (fluctuates), IMO:

      1. awaldstein

        I’ll check them out.Heard about the 35s from Fred and fell for them:A tech product that truly delivers: Bose QC 35 wireless headphones…Funny over the last year I’ve basically bought only these and many (many) pairs of Allbirds as presents for the extended family. There are people wearing these on their heads and feet all over thanks to me (and partially Fred).

        1. kenberger

          The 35’s are excellent. And new model out now/soon that adds a couple features but similar sound.It’s just that the Sony’s are markedly better. The previous model was too, and the (~almost year-old) one I’m talking about is really a step up. I have A/B’ed them all (I get lots of demo products).Bose has through its history produced amazing tech breakthroughs (HQ: Framingham Mass., MIT in the house) but other entrants quickly offer something else and you notice that the Bose *sound texture* always compares a bit flat and less rich, even though their in-store demo stations are usually super impressive, and off in their own elite-looking section (go to BandH or some bestbuys to see what i mean).

          1. awaldstein

            Good points and thanks.I’ve always been an amateur audio person as I spent my formative years building the developer org for Creaf, basically working with the best audio creatives in the game world and learning lots.And some consulting with Audyssey.Big upside for me is the stores as Bose’s pipeline from customer service to store pickup works well.

        2. LE

          From your post:but I simply can’t work in noisy placesWhen you need to work without music I highly recommend a pair of ‘tarmac grade’ 3m earmuffs. I have a pair at the office and a pair at home. For the first time I even traveled with them. In case I was in the lobby working and I wanted to block out noise. They are large but a good solution if you aren’t in the mood for music.Like this (I think the ones I have are higher db rated but I can’t find them quickly but similar)…

          1. awaldstein

            The QC 35s are exactly that–superb noise reduction with wireless for listening or calls. Light, good looking, durable. Kick-ass basically.No need for anything else.

  5. jason wright

    are there no health implications with these devices? i value continued healthy brain function.

  6. jason wright

    today is that Google event where we get to see the new Pixel phones and a bunch of other stuff, including the ridiculously expensive ‘Pixelbook’ laptop. is it just a Chromebook, or something more?

  7. Alex

    What exactly is better at Android than at IOS?

    1. jason wright

      giving the poor people of this world the opportunity to level the playing field? show me the $50 iphone.

      1. Lawrence Brass

        That would be nice. The high end smartphone market is saturated and there is plenty of room to grow at the low end, it is a huge market opportunity. If Apple wants to play in that field they need to go back deep into its roots. Not sure if they are still capable of doing that.

        1. jason wright

          nice, and i think necessary. perhaps a stripped down iphonette?

    2. fredwilson

      Where do I start?

      1. Alex

        Just you’re top five Features. I’ve never owned an Android smartphone and have never seen the point why I should.

    3. Dan G

      Android and IOS, does the same things, but Android has cheaper options- from my experience

  8. ampressman

    Fred, do you wear an Apple watch? You can apparently set up the new LTE version with an iPhone and then move your phone SIM card to an Android phone and many things including iMessage still work via the watch. These folks tested it out:

  9. gotham42

    Fred, if the main thing you miss from iMessages is the ability to send and receive texts from your Mac, PushBullet ( allows you to send and receive messages and images from your PC or Mac. That was one of the things I missed moving over to Android, but since I use a PC at work, this allows me to send/receive texts from my PC as well! Hope this helps and don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions. https://uploads.disquscdn.c

    1. Daniel Pardes

      I love PushBullet and second the motion.

    2. static

      I’ve used hangouts to send texts from the computer for the past 4 years or so, very easy.

  10. remlap42

    Here’s an idea….just use an iPhone.

  11. atmssg

    I’m interested to hear people’s thoughts on interoperability of messaging apps. Messaging has become a communication channel unto itself, and it’s one of only 5 channels of communication on the planet (face to face, mail, phone, email, messaging). Messaging is the only channel where it’s not possible to communicate cross-brand. Imagine if a gmail account couldn’t communicate with an outlook mail account.There are reasons that it makes sense for messaging apps to stay separate, but there are also reasons for interoperability.My hope is that google starts to interoperate with the smaller messaging apps (Kik, viber, Telegraph) and we get into a big 3 situation. How do people think this will turn out?

    1. Lawrence Brass

      Facebook Messenger + Whatsapp (which is owned by facebook)kind of rule the world of instant messaging, ask them not Google.I was a happy iMessage user, best user experience in town, and tried to resist Whasapp the most I could. At the end I had to switch because of “network effects” I got from people I work for. Something like this: “I will put it very simply for you, if you want to continue to work with us you have to switch”.There is a common technical ground because many IM providers support the XMPP protocol [1]. It would be fairly easy to interoperate. The problem is that providers have extended the protocol with propietary extensions and also they may not be interested in interoperation due to strategic or security reasons.[1] XMPP – Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol

      1. atmssg

        I think that SMS still rules the world of Messaging and Google has about 50% of the phones that do SMS. If they pulled a move like Apple did with iMessage, they would quickly be up there with iMessage, and FB. Rolling up the smaller apps give them more network effect.It’s a weird situation because FB messengers have great network, but they don’t have the device. Apple and google have amazing potential, because they have the devices = network, but haven’t started too much branding or product.

        1. Lawrence Brass

          Yes, SMS is the default for IM, every mobile phone has it. IM clients as iMessage use SMS when the other side don’t have an iMessage client/app.I understand your idea . It takes to modify the default Android messaging app to use a propietary network aside of SMS. I don’t know if the default app does that already. Google intervenes some default Android services for their network mapping and tracking activities, such as location, which is presented to the user as an opportunity to “increase accurracy”.They could do the same with messaging to feed their algorithms, as FB does.

      2. Dan G

        yup, Facebook Messenger is pretty much the default messaging platform, among the people I interact with. Some WhatsApp, Google Hangout, Slack, Telegram. I use a Galaxy, never had an iPhone, so – what’s iMessage? lol

  12. Tal Lev

    PieMessage is a workaround allowing you to at least receive iMessage messages on your android assuming you also have a Mac and using the Mac client. Not very elegant but seems to work.

  13. Tal Lev

    My biggest concern switching from ios to android (and Fred I’m with you – I ain’t ever switchin’ back!) was my large iTunes music library, much of which ripped off CDs using Apple Lossless encoding. The best solution I found to date was VLC, which is a fast music player also capable of playing Apple Lossless files. However VLC doesn’t automatically sync up with iTunes (I just copy the music directories I want directly to the phone’s card via USB, letting VLC autodetect them, not elegant but not too bad). I’d be very interested in hearing if other folks found other / better solutions to keeping their iTunes music libraries and playing their music on android.

    1. static

      You can upload them to the cloud with Google Play Music Manager or Amazon Music, then sync what you want to the phone.

  14. jon vanhala

    having just switched back to Android from iOS I am living this. Airpods work just fine as a bluetooth headset yet what you will truly miss and be annoyed by is the lack of iMessage and possibly the lack of integration with TVOS for conf rooms and home of you are used to Apple TV at all.

  15. kenberger


  16. creative group

    CONTRIBUTORS:The Google event highlighted so much of what Apple wished it could be and how much they will copycat fromGoogle’s various platforms.From the Pixel 2to the Google lens, photos, album ordering, etc.Continue to kick butt for the Consumer Google without overcharging and gouging the Customer for overpriced hardware.

    1. jason wright

      you would buy that Pixelbook?

      1. creative group

        Jason wright:We are partial to Lenovo computers in all iterations before other products. We would never purchase Apples hardware in any form.Pixelbook is just a Chrome renamed.Not even powerful enough for our usage. We require a i5 minimum.Pixelbook with current bugs are overpriced. The Pixelbook is competing with customers who would spend $1200 on a Surface Pro.Don’t get why people enjoy spending more for hardware and receive less than comparable hardware.

  17. ShanaC

    You might not want to – Google just introduced the real life equivalent to a babelfish

  18. mplsvbhvr

    Are we going to get a Pixel Bud post next? 🙂

  19. Adam Parish

    I agree on iMessage for Android. I feel like Apple should act on this before iMessage becomes the BBM of the 2020s.

  20. kenberger

    ha– I didn’t know(s)!!

  21. Pointsandfigures

    http://www.androidauthority… I duckduckgo’ed it. This is from 2016, so it might be a bit old. For the average user, I don’t think it’s enough. Android has far more price points though.

  22. LE

    Agree. I own both an iphone and a Samsung Galaxy 8+ on two different carriers (diverse path routing … in case of a backhoe ) [1]Anyway the screenshot below pretty much sums up and confirms that if Android has a larger market share it’s for the same reason the IBM PC had one over the Macintosh. Note the ‘propeller head’ discussion. Iphone is a much better experience and a better UI hands down. And no most people don’t have a need to root their phone either and bypass the system security. And great I can split the screen on a small screen exactly what I want to do…. https://uploads.disquscdn.c… .[1] (2006)