I freaking love these little things. As with most things Apple, I initially said there was zero chance of my spending $160 on something that small, and then within a few weeks I was pissed that I had to wait 6 weeks for them to ship.
They ARE small. The case does look like a dental floss container. I’m pleased and amazed to report that I have lost neither an AirPod nor the case (yet), probably largely because I bought a cover that clips on to my bag. The wirelessness that makes the AirPods easy to lose also makes them easier to use—you won’t find me embittered over not having to untangle headphone wires.
They DO look stupid. “Where are the wires?” people ask me. Or “do you have horns growing out of your head?” Or I just get strange looks. More often than not, though, , before the interaction is over, the people ribbing me are asking me where they can get a pair. I intensify the stupid look by often wearing just the right Pod. Hey, it works for me.
Apple has thought of everything! They magically connect to the things I want them to connect to, and they don’t drop the connection. It’s easy to check the battery status. To charge them, you just put them in the case.
Speaking of battery status, I haven’t run any tests, but I my impression is that the battery life is pretty good. Without the charging case, I wouldn’t say that, but it’s so easy to charge them back up that it seems very painless.
I probably should have discussed sound first, but I’m not an audiophile. That being said, I think they sound really good. I notice myself putting them in to listen to things even when I’m not around other people and could just use my speakers, because they sound so good. I definitely prefer them for making phone calls (my primary use for them).
Are they worth $160? As with all things Apple, apparently so, because people are buying them. I wouldn’t scrimp and save for them. They’re not life-changing. But I would recommend them for people who talk on the phone a lot or get peevish about tangled headphone wires. If I exercised, I’d probably recommend them for that too…they sit solidly in my ears and show no inclination to slide out.
In summary, AirPods are really small, look really stupid, sound really good, and are so handy I’d feel bereft if I suddenly didn’t have them.