There are times when fashion crosses over with technology, and the company at the forefront of this strange happening is Apple. Don’t deny it. It happened with the iPhone, thousands of people now wear iWatches and now suited and booted workers on their commutes use Airpods. But the biggest issue when fashion and tech mix, is the price. It starts to become very expensive to keep up.

But it doesn’t have to be and you can still look good. Take the i100 TWS wireless earbuds for example. They’ve blatantly taken a note out of Apple’s design handbook. So much so that if you wore these in your ears walking through London, no one will think you’re wearing anything other than Airpods. It’s like when you buy a pair of Calvin Kleans from your local clothing market stool. No one’s going to know you’re cheap, and you still look baller.

The i100 TWS wireless headphones are exactly that, and unfortunately I feel like that’s all they’re really good for. They retail for around $17.99 from tech reseller GearBest and come with both headphones and a carrying case, which also doubles as a charger, an Apple Lightning charging cable and a rubberised cord that can keep the headphones wrapped around your neck.

Everything in our box of headphones was white which do I admit give them a very premium feeling if compared to the likes of the Apple Airpods. The carrying case will also act as the earbuds’ charger. Standby time is around 100 hours which although we didn’t quite test for the full 100 hours, they did last the week during commutes. Audio playback however only comes in at two hours. After this, you’ll have to stick the headphones back in the case for a charge. Not an ideal amount of time I don’t think. However, they do only take around one hour to get back up to full battery again.

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The case uses the standard Apple lighting cable to charge which is alright, but I would have liked to have seen something a little more universal like microUSB or even Type-C now. As these aren’t an official Apple product, and the fact GearBest advertise them working with majority Android devices makes it a little confusing that they would use an Apple connection. The headphones are only Bluetooth so there’s that fact too, that there’s no magic happening behind the scenes like the superior connection of the Airpods and an Apple mobile phone.

In terms of sound quality, I’ve heard better, that’s for sure. They’re not the greatest, and anyone who’s into their music are not going to enjoy the audio quality these produce. There’s a distinct lack of bass to your music using the i100 TWS Wireless Earbuds . It’s almost as if there’s some kind of heavy treble lift during playback. Soundstage is also fairly narrow too. Straight Outta Compton’s deep bass line was pretty much cut. It’s present, but there’s no thud. Similar to Childish Gambino’s This is America. There’s no rumble. The sound is present but it just lacks that vibration you would get from a higher quality set of headphones. But I have to keep reminding myself that these are only $17 after all. Rock music was slightly better as it relies on a near flat EQ to blend the music. Still, Jimmy Eat World, blessthefall and still felt a little dead.

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Controls feel very nice to use, and the touch sensitivity is enough to give the headphones a little stroke to do things like play/pause and skip track while in Spotify and also answer and hang up phone calls. I found it quite strange however that the left earbud was used for skip forward and right was skip back. Looking at your phone while skipping tracks I would have liked these reversed, as you usually skip track on the right, like every single music player EVER! But hey, $17 remember? Things can’t be perfect.

But, if you’re someone who’s after a bit of a fashion fix, and want to keep up to date with the latest tech trends, or you have kids that all want to look the business on the playground with their new “Airpods”, you could go for some of these for sure over a set of Apple Airpods which in all honesty, don’t sound much better than these anyway. The i100 TWS Wireless Earbuds sound quality is trash, but the built quality is pretty solid and the battery life is okay for short commutes. Charge time is nice and the case standby time is huge. But because of the sound quality, it’s hard to really recommend these to any kind of audio lovers out there. Find more info here.

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