Google's biggest new Pixel Buds Pro feature since launch is hitting earbuds now

You'll need one of Google's flagship phones to take advantage of it, though

Google's Pixel Buds Pro are some of the best true wireless earbuds available on the market thanks to rich audio and active noise cancelation, but it's software features like transparency mode and always-on "Hey Google" detection that separates them from the pack. Starting today, Google's flagship earbuds will get another leg up on the competition thanks to a new software feature in the latest update.

Google today announced spatial audio with head tracking has begun rolling out to all Pixel Buds Pro users. The feature, popularized by Apple’s AirPods Pro, creates a Dolby Atmos-like effect where the sound seems to be coming from all around you as if you were at a movie theater or a concert. But it goes a step further and uses head tracking to make the sound move along with you as you turn your head or change positions — in essence, creating a 3D virtual soundstage and placing you right at the center of it.

There is a catch, however: your Pixel Buds Pro will need to be paired with either a Pixel 6, Pixel 6 Pro, Pixel 7, or Pixel 7 Pro — Google’s A-series smartphones and earbuds are not supported. You’ll also need to be using an app that supports spatial audio, like YouTube, HBO Max, or Netflix, and the content itself will need to be available in 5.1+ surround sound.

To try it out, make sure your Buds Pro are running firmware version 4.30 by opening the Pixel Buds app and heading to More settings -> Firmware update. Then, make sure your Pixel phone is running the latest Android version and head to Settings -> Sound & vibration -> Spatial Audio to enable the main Spatial Audio toggle. Once done, head to Settings -> Connected devices on your phone, choose your Pixel Buds Pro from the list and tap the settings cog, then select Head tracking and enable the feature.

From there, it’s just a matter of queuing up some Dolby Audio 5.1 content in a supported app, but note that Google recommends you place your phone on a flat surface or stand to keep it steady while listening.

Source: Google

Google Pixel Buds Pro

The Pixel Buds Pro have always-on “Hey Google” detection to go with rich sound, great ANC, and a handy transparency mode. Things just got even better thanks to an update that enables spatial audio with head tracking. As if that weren’t enough, the popular Lemongrass colorway is currently on sale for $20 off at Amazon.

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