The Sony WF-1000XM4 earbuds have topped our guide to the best true wireless earbuds since they were released. They won over our reviewer thanks to their thoroughly excellent sound quality and fantastic app, which allows you a range of added control.
Based on Sony's usual release schedule, an update is due in the near future – and we may have just caught a glimpse of them. The impending headphones were certified by the FCC recently, suggesting that a release could be coming shortly.
That certification also showed off images of the device. As reported by GSMArena (opens in new tab), the images appear to show a smaller earbud than the previous generation. That's always a welcome upgrade, and while we didn't note the size of the XM4's to be an issue, some users have reported struggling with their size.
The case is rated for 5V 230mAh which is a step up from the XM4's. That should make for better battery life and, hopefully, we'll also see faster charging times. They weren't too bad before, but faster is almost always better when it comes to charging – particularly today, when phones can achieve a full 0-100 charge in just minutes. The buds also switch from a three-pin charging point to a dual-pin charging point.
Elsewhere, the status indicator LED has moved from the inside of the case to the front panel. It's a small change, but hey, it might make it one-step simpler to get your hands – or, indeed, eyes – on the information you need.
Personally, I think that this sounds like a welcome upgrade for users. When the formula is already this good, you don't need to mess with too much. Slimming down the case size and boosting the charging speed will satisfy users who want the latest and best on offer, without alienating those who have been a fan of the range for a while.
There's no concrete information on when the new model is likely to be released. However, the appearance of an official certification is a good sign that we aren't far away.