Sony WF-1000XM4 true wireless stereo (TWS) earphones have been launched globally. The earphones are set to go on sale in various global markets starting June 2021. These are the most advanced TWS earbuds from Sony ever, going up against premium options such as Apple AirPods Pro and Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro. These are also among the first true wireless earphones in the world to feature support for the high-resolution LDAC Bluetooth codec and come with other premium features such as active noise cancellation (ANC) and Qi wireless charging for the case.
The Sony WF-1000XM4 TWS earbuds are priced at $279 (approximately Rs. 20,400), putting them in direct competition with other premium options from major brands such as Apple AirPods Pro, Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro, and Jabra Elite 85t. The earphones are set to go on sale starting June 2021. Specific availability in some markets such as EU, US, and UK could be announced in the coming days.
Pricing and availability for India have not been announced yet, but it's likely that Sony will launch the new earphones in the county in the coming weeks. The new headphones succeed Sony WF-1000XM3 that were launched in India in mid-2020, priced at Rs. 19,990.
Like other premium TWS earphones in the segment, Sony WF-1000XM4 feature ANC that is claimed to be 40 percent better than the XM3 generation. There is also a new Sony V1 processing chip that supports the improved ANC and also promises better audio quality and connectivity. The earpieces themselves are much smaller than the WF-1000XM3, with a completely new design that promises better comfort without any reduction in battery life or performance.
A key new addition is support for the LDAC Bluetooth codec on Sony WF-1000XM4. These are among the first TWS earbuds to feature the advanced high-resolution Bluetooth codec that is considered superior to SBC, AAC, and Qualcomm aptX Bluetooth codecs typically seen on true wireless earphones. With this, the earbuds should be able to carry larger amount of data over Bluetooth, promising better audio quality and some basic support for some high-resolution audio content. There is also support for Sony's DSEE Extreme audio upscaling, as well as 360 Reality Audio.
Other features include Qi wireless charging for the case, battery life of up to 24 hours per charge cycle with ANC on (8 hours on the earphones, 16 additional hours from the case), and IPX4 water resistance. The earphones will be available in black and silver colour options and will have app support through Sony's Headphones Connect app with access to the default voice assistant on your smartphone and the Google Fast Pair protocol. Sony's speak-to-chat feature, that we first saw on Sony WH-1000XM4 over-ear wireless headphones, is also present on Sony WF-1000XM4.