Nothing’s Ear 1 earbuds, which launched earlier this year in a fetching white and transparent plastic color scheme, will soon come in black. The new Nothing Ear 1 black edition still features transparent plastic in its construction, but now it’s accompanied by matte black plastic. The new color scheme will be widely available from December 13th at the same price as the original white versions: $99 / £99.
Aside from the new design, these earbuds are functionally identical to what Nothing released earlier this year. You still get up to 5.7 hours of battery life from the earbuds with noise canceling turned off, dropping to four hours if you turn it on. Alongside the case, you get a maximum of 34 hours. The earbuds are also IPX4 water resistant and can be charged wirelessly using Qi.
The company is styling the new color as a “limited edition” but added that it hopes it’ll become “a permanent addition to its range.”
Nothing also claims that its Ear 1 earbuds are now carbon neutral, and that it’s worked with third-party certification company SGS to help assess and neutralize its carbon footprint. But the company is also accepting payment for them in cryptocurrencies, whose payment networks are notoriously energy-intensive to run. The Bitcoin network alone is estimated to use about the same amount of electricity annually as Washington state, and anywhere from 25 to 60 percent of this reportedly comes from nonrenewable sources.
When I asked Nothing about this apparent contradiction, it pointed me toward the Crypto Climate Accord, an effort to make the crypto industry produce net-zero emissions in nine years’ time in 2030.
If you’d like to buy Nothing’s “carbon neutral” earbuds with cryptocurrency, the company will accept Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), USD Coin (USDC), and Dogecoin (DOGE) for purchases made via its own online store in select countries including the US, UK, Canada, and Japan.