Urbanears, the Swedish audio brand known for its rough-and-tumble Plattan headphones, has a new line of true wireless earbuds made mostly from recycled materials–or as the company cheekily puts it, they’re “made from trash.”
Available starting April 12 in both open- and sealed-fit versions, the Bluetooth-enabled Urbanears Boo headphones follow in the footsteps of the manufacturers wireless Alby earbuds. At a glance, the two headsets look nearly identical, save for the switch from a clamshell-style charging case to a hinged top-loading design.
But a key difference between the Alby and new Boo lines concerns what they’re made of. Specifically, Urbanears says the open-fit Boo earbuds are fabricated from 97 percent recycled plastics, such as bottles, air conditioner parts, and “other junk,” while the sealed-fit Boo Tips are made of 91 percent recycled materials.
The new “made-from-trash” Boo earbuds are part of the manufacturer’s drive to become “fully circular and climate neutral” by 2030, according to an Urbanears press release.
As with the earlier Alby headphones, neither of the wireless Boo models offer active noise cancellation, which isn’t surprising given the $79.99 price point. That said, the sealed-fit Boo Tips will give you some passive noise cancellation by way of their included silicone tips, three sizes of which are included in the box.
Both the Boo and Boo Tips come with IPX4 certification for protection against splashing water from any direction, good for taking the buds for a jog in the rain. The charging case arrives with IPX3-certified resistance to water sprays up to 60 degrees from the top of the unit.
The Bluetooth 5.2-enabled headphone boasts touch controls that allow you to skip or repeat tracks as well as take calls, although they can’t automatically pause your tunes when you take them out of your ears (again, not a big shock considering the price). Both the SBC and AAC Bluetooth codecs are supported.
You can expect up to 4.5 hours of playback time from the Boo earbuds, while the charging case can deliver up to 25.5 hours of battery life. The 1.3-ounce case itself can be charged via a USB-C charging port.
We’ll have full reviews of the Urbanears Boo and Boo Tips once we test out some review units.
Ben has been writing about technology and consumer electronics for more than 20 years. A PCWorld contributor since 2014, Ben joined TechHive in 2019, where he covers smart speakers, soundbars, and other smart and home-theater devices. You can follow Ben on Twitter.