Today, in our continuing series After The Review, we take a second look at the Rowkin Mini Plus+ wire-free earbuds. When Apple ditched the headphone jack and announced their AirPods, the headphone world scrambled. There were many companies trying to get to the market and be the alternative to the insanely priced Apple offering.
The Rowkin Mini Plus+ earbuds initially had some promise to them. They were small, with a decent design and a good price point. It’s been almost a year since our review and our report back isn’t as great as one would have hoped. I’ll hit on each category we cover in our reviews and offer up a second thought for your consideration.
Design – These are still well designed and the build quality is still top notch. Constructed with stainless steel and other high-quality materials I feel they’ve held up really well. In my original review, I scored them at 4.5 out of 5 for design. I’d say that is still accurate.
Ease of Use – Initial pairing to your smartphone is painless. However, I did find that pairing one to another was sometimes more of a chore than it should be. They should remember each other as being paired to one another but I found I had to repair them a few times.
Probably the biggest issue with the Rowkin Mini Plus+ earbuds is connectivity between the two. I believe many other manufacturers suffered from the same issue and I think it was under-researched and under-tested. I gave the Rowkin’s the benefit of the doubt and did as the company told me, rotate the bud in my ear until connectivity returned. But this became irritating and frustrating to have to do every time connectivity was lost. In my original review, I scored them at 4 out of 5 for ease of use. I’m disappointed to say they now score a 2 out of 5.
Sound – These still sound great though, when they’re connected properly. In my original review, I scored them at 4.5 out of 5 for sound and that still stands.
Reception/Call Quality – Nothing has changed here, the initial score was 4.25 out of 5 and that still stands.
Battery Life – Battery life remains the same and that isn’t stellar but these things are small. In my original review, I scored them at 3.5 out of 5 for battery and that stands.
Price/Value – Ease of Use and Price/Value are where I am dinging these earbuds the most in this After The Review follow up. In my original review, I scored them at 3.75 out of 5 for price/value. At $109USD I expect these to stay connected and not have to constantly get them reconnected. So the score for price/value goes down to a 2 from a 3.75.
Wrap Up – Wire-free technology is still evolving. The Rowkin Mini Plus+ earbuds were among the first to appear on the market. For that reason, I think they suffered from immature technology. I wouldn’t recommend these unless you’re prepared to deal with connectivity issues. If you are considering these, perhaps email the company and ask if they’ve made updates or improvements first.
Read the full review of the Rowkin Mini Plus+ earbuds here.