People always look at me weirdly when I say that I use Samsung’s Galaxy Buds Live with my iPhone 12 Pro. But it’s a pairing that makes sense for me: First, I need something that sits entirely within my ear, without a stem that’s going to risk being knocked about by a bike helmet’s strap. Second, they work with Samsung’s companion Galaxy Buds app on iOS, so I can still access their advanced features. And third? I just love that they’re shaped like little kidney beans.
But if you were to try the same thing with Samsung’s newer Galaxy Buds Pro or Galaxy Buds 2 you’ll find Samsung’s iOS earbud companion app hasn’t been updated to support them. Samsung wants you to buy a Samsung phone, so it appears to be locking you out of numerous little features, much like how Apple’s AirPods Pro are similarly restricted if you try to use them with an Android phone, or how OnePlus’ earbuds were missing key features when used with non-OnePlus Android devices at launch.
While I can happily use the iOS companion app to tweak and update last year’s Buds Live, the same app won’t be able to recognize Samsung’s latest buds. If you’re an iPhone user, it’s an annoying enough situation that it feels like Samsung isn’t interested in your money.