Bose is getting very close to announcing a second-generation model of its popular Quiet Comfort 35 noise-canceling headphones. In early August, The Verge revealed that the company had accidentally included an image of unreleased headphones in a marketing newsletter. 9to5Google has since followed up with reports on the headline difference between these upcoming headphones and the original model: it’s Google Assistant.
The new “Action button” on the QC35II headphones will be used to activate Google Assistant. From there, Assistant can answer general questions, send or read back your texts, control music, and more with your smartphone tucked away in your pocket. Assistant is available on iOS too, but I would hope that this Action button can also trigger Siri for iPhone users. Bose is slapping “Google Assistant built in” branding right on the box, and a product sheet seen by 9to5Google confirms that you can press and hold the button to speak to Assistant. “Built in” might also be overselling it a bit since your smartphone will still be necessary for Assistant to function.
The above image, according to a Reddit user, was briefly posted to an unspecified online marketplace. So these headphones must be coming fairly soon if someone is already trying to offload a pair. Pretty bold move, stranger. In that shot, you can again see the extra button, confirming that these are the same headphones we caught a glimpse of in August.
Here’s a photo of the box’s front, which confirms the name.
Presumably not much else about the QC35’s core features have changed if Bose has chosen to simply name these “QuietComfort 35 II” instead of going up to 45 or a different model name. They still offer some of the best noise cancellation around, and Bose has given users more ways to customize the level of ANC via software updates that have been released in recent months. Maybe battery life has been improved a bit, but I wouldn’t expect any other major differences.