Leaked Nothing Ear (a) buds certainly look ready for spring

A repositioning and a redesign – with a surprise collaboration?

Nothing Ear (a)
(Image credit: Android Headlines)
Quick Summary

Nothing is releasing two new wireless earbuds, Nothing Ear and Nothing Ear (a), on 18 April.

The Nothing Ear (a) is expected to be a more affordable option with a new in-ear design, active noise cancellation, and a spring-ready yellow colour.

Nothing Tech is preparing to relaunch its audio offering and it's going to be doing so with two pairs of wireless earbuds. The company has confirmed that it will be launching the Nothing Ear and Nothing Ear (a) on 18 April - not only changing the name, but making the positioning clearer too.

The Nothing Ear will be the premium offering, while the Nothing Ear (a) will be "perfect everyday buds". The new naming strategy very much feels like the sort of thing that Apple does, focusing on the product name, rather than a numbering system. The change will make it easier to select the earbuds for you, says Akis Evangelidis from Nothing in a community blogpost: "we're stripping back the numbers from our audio product names to simplify the process of finding the earbuds that are right for you."

The Nothing Ear (2) really impressed us when they launched in 2023 - one of the best wireless earbuds around - and it doesn't look like there will be a huge change when the Nothing Ear replaces them. According to leaks from Android Headlines, the design of these buds will be pretty much the same, keeping that signature transparency and coming in both black and white colours.

The Nothing Ear is said to offer active noise cancellation, an IP54 rating, and 7.5 hours of battery life. Exactly what will change remains to be seen compared to the existing Nothing Ear (2).

Nothing Ear (a)

(Image credit: Android Headlines)

The Nothing Ear (a) could be much more exciting

But it's the Nothing Ear (a) that will turn heads and the new yellow colour adds some excitement to these more affordable headphones. The Nothing Ear (a) look positioned to replace the Nothing Ear (Stick), while evolving the design quite considerably. Firstly, these headphones have a proper sealed in-ear design, unlike the Ear (Stick), while they are also enhanced with active noise cancellation and getting IP54 protection.

The design is a little different to the Nothing Ear - according to the image leaks - but not drastically so. While the Nothing Ear appears to have grilles on the exterior for external mics (most likely to power the active noise cancellation), the Ear (a) doesn't appear to feature this. That suggests that any noise cancellation will perform slightly differently between the two sets of headphones.

More exciting is the yellow colour that has leaked. This not only suits the move into spring perfectly but could be tied into another product. Recently, Nothing teased the 18 April date on its Twitter feed with a yellow frog. This not only aligns with the yellow of the Nothing Ear (a), but the Tweet includes the words "Play Date".

That brings to mind the Playdate handheld gaming device - also yellow - which comes from Teenage Engineering, co-founders of Nothing. It could be that there's a greater collaboration here and that the Nothing Ear (a) are being positioned as the perfect companion for the Playdate console.

Certainly, the redesign of the Nothing Ear (a) could make them some of the best affordable wireless headphones around - and all will be revealed on 18 April.

Chris Hall

Chris has been writing about consumer tech for over 15 years. Formerly the Editor-in-Chief of Pocket-lint, he's covered just about every product launched, witnessed the birth of Android, the evolution of 5G, and the drive towards electric cars. You name it and Chris has written about it, driven it or reviewed it. Now working as a freelance technology expert, Chris' experience sees him covering all aspects of smartphones, smart homes and anything else connected. Chris has been published in titles as diverse as Computer Active and Autocar, and regularly appears on BBC News, BBC Radio, Sky, Monocle and Times Radio. He was once even on The Apprentice... but we don't talk about that.