Most likely, you’ve been browsing and searching online for bone-conduction headphones and have come across Shokz and AfterShokz headphones many times. And you’re confused about whether both are the same or different brands.
No worries! You are not alone. This question is very commonly asked by buyers who are entering the bone-conduction headphones realm. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the Shokz vs AfterShokz bone-conduction headphones.
Continue reading this post to find out the answer to this riddle.
Is Shokz the Same as Aftershokz?
AfterShokz is a renowned brand that was founded in 2011, launching its first collection of headphones. After roughly a decade in the industry, on December 29th, 2021, AfterShokz rebranded and changed its name to Shokz.
In other words, Shokz and AfterShokz are the same.
The company claimed that it changed its name to simplify branding and make it easier for people to remember and share the brand. When the brand was renamed, we saw the exit of Aeropex, which was a hero product of Shokz. And a new product came in as its replacement, named OpenRun.
Yet, some AfterShokz products are still available, and you can buy them after a quick online search. So, here a question arises: What are the differences between old and new models, and which bone-conduction headphones are best?
Why Did AfterShokz Change To Shokz?
As already mentioned, Shokz changed the name to make it snappier, shorter, and more shareable. Most product names in this modern world are two-syllable, so the change of name from AfterShokz to Shokz was to make the brand name easier to say, remember, and share with others.
However, not everyone was happy with this change, as the name AfterShokz became synonymous with bone-conduction audio for a lot of people. Even now, many online and offline retailers have to add the additional line “previously AfterShokz” on their Shokz products to ensure people can recognize it.
Where Is Shokz Located?
It is somehow complicated to define where Shokz is located. The Shokz’s head office is located in Austin, Texas. There are some other offices, but they don’t directly fall under the Texas office. These offices include:
- Shokz Holding Ltd. in Hong Kong
- AfterShokz Euro in Leiden, The Netherlands
- Shenzhen Shokz in Guangdong, China
These offices called themselves the “Shokz family of companies” and operate as affiliates. Each office is a separate data controller for a particular region. Hong Kong has more responsibility as it controls all areas not covered by other regions. In short, Shokz is an international brand that is not really located in one fixed region or country.
Is Shokz A Chinese Company?
Shokz was founded in Syracuse, New York, in 2011 and is now based in Austin, Texas. However, the technology behind the bone-conduction headphones of the Shokz comes from the Shenzhen Shokz Co., Ltd., based in Shenzhen, China.
Shenzhen Shokz has been working in the audio industry and manufacturing standard headphones and speakers since 2004. In 2007, the company conducted its own research and started focusing exclusively on bone-conduction technology.
After bone-conduction research, the company finally introduced its bone-conduction headphones into the mainstream in 2011. The company’s main focus was on athletes, and it partnered with affiliate companies like one in Austin, Texas, to distribute its headphones.
So, even though the bone-conduction technology was perfected and is continuously improving in China and most of the manufacturing is done in Shenzhen, Shokz is truly a multinational group of companies.
Which Shokz are the best?
Since the rebranding of AfterShokz to Shokz, there are various AfterShokz and Shokz products you can still purchase online. In this article, we’ll only discuss products that are widely available.
The AfterShokz Models that are Currently Available
- The AfterShokz Air is the only AfterShokz model that you can still find online.
The AfterShokz Models that are Currently Available
- Shokz OpenRun
- Shokz OpenRun Pro
- Shokz OpenRun mini (formerly known as Aftershokz Aeropex)
- Shokz OpenMove
- Shokz OpenSwin (formerly known as Aftershokz Xtrainerz)
- Shokz OpenComm and OpenComm UC
|Aftershokz Aeropex (Rebranded as...||43,236 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|Aftershokz OpenMove (Rebranded as...||19,994 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|Aftershokz OpenComm (Rebranded as...||2,511 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|AfterShokz Air Bone Conduction...||4,622 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|AfterShokz Titanium Open Ear...||6,212 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|Aftershokz Xtrainerz Bone...||1,964 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|SHOKZ OpenRun Pro - Open-Ear...||11,439 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|Aftershokz Titanium Mini Bone...||443 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|Shokz OpenSwim Swimming MP3 - Bone...||1,747 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|Aftershokz Aeropex Mini (Rebranded...||43,240 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|SHOKZ OpenRun Mini (AfterShokz...||17,123 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
This list makes it clear that some of the previous AfterShokz models have been replaced, including the AfterShokz Aeropex headphone model, which has been replaced and upgraded to the new Shokz OpenRun.
Similarly, the waterproof lines of AfterShokz and Xtrainerz have been replaced and upgraded to the OpenSwin range.
Categories of Shokz Headphones
Shokz has divided its bone-conduction headphones into three categories:
We’ll briefly discuss these categories so you can get a clear idea of the whole picture, which will be greatly helpful in making your decision based on what you exactly want.
- Sport Shokz Headphones
In the sports category of Shokz, we have four outstanding models.
- Shokz OpenRun – $129.95
- Shokz OpenRun Pro – $179.95
- Shokz OpenMove, $79.95
- AfterShokz Air – $119.95
Notable price differences between these models justify Shokz’s claim to present these products from entry-level to pro in the market.
When we reviewed these products, we found that OpenMove headphones are designed for people who want to enter the bone-conduction headphones realm without paying a hefty price tag and still getting an excellent bone-conduction listening experience.
Some features this OpenMove model misses include quick charging, a magnetic charging port, no smaller size option, and a lack of a full wrap-around design. If you are OK with not having these features, then OpenMove is the best bone-conduction headphone for you.
While reviewing we found an interesting difference between OpenRun and OpenRun Pro. The OpenRun model offers a waterproof rating of IP67, while the water-resistance rating of the OpenRun Pro is IP55. So, if you’re trying to decide between these models, keep this in mind.
AfterShokz Air, which is the second-cheapest model on the list, we recommend you upgrade to OpenRun. OpenRun has more improved features, including waterproofing, quick charging, and increased battery life, which make the extra $10 definitely worth it.
- Work/Communication Shokz Headphones
If you’re looking for a bone-conduction headset for your work or day-to-day communication, Shokz’s OpenComm range is designed for these purposes.
Bone-conduction headphones in the OpenComm range include:
The only difference between these two models is that the UC model offers an easy USB connection between your bone-conduction headphones and your computer or laptop. Except for this feature, both models are the same, and you are paying an extra $40 only for it.
- Swimming Shokz Headphones
Swimming Shokz headphones include the waterproof model OpenSwin, with a price tag of $149.95. Regarding the headphone cost, OpenSwin sits comfortably in the middle of Shokz Bone-conduction headphones.
In our review, we found that you can submerge this model up to 2 meters in depth in water, which is unique to this model. Moreover, these headphones don’t have a built-in microphone and only run on internal music storage.
So, the Shokz OpenSwin bone-conduction headphones are excellent for those who want their swimming companions Besides that, you may be better off looking somewhere else if you want a more versatile product.
In conclusion, Shokz, previously AfterShokz, is a leading name in bone-conduction audio technology and offers a range of outstanding products. All the sports, work, and swimming communities have great options to choose from.
But apparently, these devices come with a high price tag, so you must consider all your options and your specific needs before investing in one.
If you ask us for a single option that can perform well at every place, we’ll suggest the Shokz OpenRun, which stands out as the best all-rounder headphone model. With its built-in microphone, fast charging, and IP67 waterproof rating, OpenRun definitely seems like the most sensible option for someone wanting the best of both worlds.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are AfterShokz good for Phone Calls?
Except for Shokz OpenSwin, you can use all other Shokz models for making calls. If you’re looking for a bone-conduction headset specifically built for taking conference calls, the Shokz OpenComm range is worth looking into. These headphones provide a high-quality phone call experience thanks to their special DSP noise-canceling boom microphone.
Did AfterShokz rebrand to Shokz?
AfterShokz and Shokz are the same. AfterShokz rebranded to Shokz on December 29th, 2021. They changed their name to simplify branding and make it easy for people to remember and share. A few things changed simultaneously, but the company is still the same and has the same products.
Can you swim with Shokz?
Shokz OpenSwin is the best Shokz model for swimming. It has a waterproof rating of IP68, which means it can be submerged underwater at a depth of 2 meters for up to two hours. The company has tested these headphones at 50 atmospheres of pressure to ensure the perfect working of these waterproof headphones.