Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro users experience skin irritation and ear infections

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Owners of the Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro report skin irritation after wearing the earbuds. Some even end up with an ear infection. Samsung does not acknowledge the problems, but apparently gives money back for the earphones without doing very difficult.

The Buds Pro have been available since January. Reports of skin problems have been coming in for some time, according to a message on Sammobile, among others, that is based on Chinese reporting, published in May this year. Around that time, a support topic was also created on the official Samsung forum. That topic now has 16 pages, with many commenters confirming that they suffer from things like itching, irritation, swelling, inflammation and pus and blood that comes out of the ears. In several cases, users have to see an ear doctor for their complaints and recovery can take several weeks.

Android Central again raised the alarm about the case last Friday, after editor Chris Wedel had to deal with it himself. He’s sure it’s because of the Samsung earbuds, as he only experiences it when using them and even only got it in one ear when he wore the Buds Pro only in that ear. Following his story, comments in a Reddit post are also pouring in, with many users having the same complaints.

Wedel thinks the problem may lie with the acrylic the tips of the earplugs are made of or, more likely, the nickel charging contacts, which also make contact with the skin when worn. According to research, 8 to 19 percent of adults are allergic to nickel, and women are four to 10 times more likely to have a nickel allergy than men.

Android Central was told by Samsung that Samsung has not yet released any information about this phenomenon. The company does acknowledge that it is a ‘more common issue’. Samsung also seems to contact affected users in the support topic to give them their money back.

In Europe, the EU Nickel Directive applies, a regulation that prescribes that a product containing nickel and which is in direct contact with the skin for a longer period of time may not release more than 0.5 µg of nickel per square centimeter per week. It is unclear how much nickel the Galaxy Buds Pro release and whether there are no more wireless earphones, from Samsung or another brand, that bring the user into contact with nickel.

The Galaxy Buds Pro – the two oval silver dots are the nickel contacts, which make contact with the charging case

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