Nothing plans surprise second launch alongside Phone (2a)

A new leak shows that Nothing is preparing to launch new earbuds alongside its next Android phone. Could the Nothing Ear (3) be incoming?

A closeup shot of the Nothing Ear (2) earbud
(Image credit: Future / Sam Cross)

Nothing is about to launch its best Android phone for budget buyers yet, the Nothing Phone (2a). But a new leak suggests that it might be launching something else too: a set of true wireless earbuds. The most likely explanation is that Nothing is preparing to bring us the successor to the Nothing Ear (2) earbuds pictured above.

That's a tantalising prospect because we really rate the Nothing Ear (2): in our Nothing Ear (2) review  we gave them the full five stars thanks to their "brilliant" sound sculpting and noise cancellation. "ANC earbuds don't come more complete than this," we said – but that was a year ago, and because tech years work like dog years the intensely competitive market for earbuds has already moved on.

What do we know about the Nothing Ear (3) earbuds?

We'd previously heard rumours of a January launch for the Ear (2)'s successors, but of course that's come and gone. The latest news comes courtesy of 91mobiles, which notes that there's an entry for new Nothing headphones on the Indian BIS certification website. Such listings have long been a great source of new product leaks, because if it's being certified by the regulators it's a real product and it's close to launch.

The downside to such listings is that they don't tell us anything about the actual product: even the name has to be guessed. And that means we don't know what if any improvements have been made to crucial features such as noise cancelling, sound quality or battery life. In our review battery life was one of the areas we identified for improvement; we also would have liked faster wireless charging. Hopefully the upgrade will deliver both.

But while details are currently so sketchy they've barely been sketched at all, it might be wise to hang on for a bit if you've been considering investing in a set of the Nothing Ear (2) earbuds: if a new model is imminent then that's likely to trigger further price cuts. At the time of writing the Ear (2) earbuds are already down from the £129 RRP to around £108 or £109 from reputable retailers; the launch of a third generation is likely to make that price fall further.

Carrie Marshall

Writer, musician and broadcaster Carrie Marshall has been covering technology since 1998 and is particularly interested in how tech can help us live our best lives. Her CV is a who’s who of magazines, newspapers, websites and radio programmes ranging from T3, Techradar and MacFormat to the BBC, Sunday Post and People’s Friend. Carrie has written more than a dozen books, ghost-wrote two more and co-wrote seven more books and a Radio 2 documentary series; her memoir, Carrie Kills A Man, was shortlisted for the British Book Awards. When she’s not scribbling, Carrie is the singer in Glaswegian rock band Unquiet Mind (unquietmindmusic).