Jabra’s super-cool new earbuds will be its last – and that’s a real shame

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Just days after Jabra announced its snazzy new earbuds with their innovative Bluetooth LE-streaming charging case, the firm has announced that it’s exiting the consumer headphone and earbud market altogether. And that’s a real shame, because products such as the Jabra Elite 8 Active are among our most-loved audio products and particularly good for fitness fans.

The announcement won’t affect product support for existing customers or the launch of the newly announced Jabra Elite 8 Active and Jabra Elite 10 Gen 2 earbuds. Those new buds will remain on sale “through 2024 and beyond”. But it seems that there won’t be a successor to either product.

Why is Jabra exiting the earbud business?

It’s not that the world of the best wireless earbuds isn’t profitable. It’s that it’s getting tougher.

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According to Jabra’s parent company GN, the company intends to wind down its Elite and Talk product lines. The premium segment the Elite range is targeted at has become “a very competitive space” while the mono Bluetooth market the Talk products inhabit is declining. For GN, there isn’t enough money in the mono market any more, and the premium sector is so crowded that continuing to invest heavily in new product lines is too much of a gamble.

According to CEO of GN Store Nord, Peter Karlstromer, “it is today our assessment that we cannot generate a fair return on investment compared to the many other opportunities we have within our Hearing, Enterprise, and Gaming businesses.” GN intends to “reduce the inventory of the affected products” by the end of 2024, although it says it will continue to support its customers “for several years”. 

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That means we’re likely to see something of a fire sale of Jabra headphones, headsets and earbuds in the coming months, which could be good news for buyers on a budget: we know that Jabra products are well made and deliver excellent performance, and with GN trying to shift as much stock as possible that should mean some pretty deep discounts. It’s a shame that Jabra is exiting the sector, but at least that means there’s something of a silver lining to the news if you’re looking for the best headphones deals.

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