Bose Shocks Reader, Not In A Good Way

Reader Jerry wants to warn you about his shocking problem with his Bose in-ear headphones. If he goes for a walk with them, they shock his inner ear. Ouch! Jerry wrote to Bose, telling them about his problem, and Bose wrote back, “Yeah? So?”. Apparently, occasional shocks to your inner ear aren’t a problem, or a design flaw, they’re a feature! See what Jerry has to say about this, inside.

Here’s something interesting for you guys.

You may have seen ads for Bose ear buds or “In Ear” phones or whatever they call them; the little buggers retail for a hefty $99 a pair.

Their main claim to fame is supposed to be great sound and superior comfort.

Unfortunately, Bose’s idea of comfort is, shall we say, a little undermined by the fact that their ear buds transmit static shocks to your inner ear!

That’s right. If you take these for a walk – something ear bud wearers might CONCEIVABLY do – you can discover this shocking design flaw for yourself.

I contacted Bose to find out wassup with dis, and here’s what they said:

We have received observations from a few customers that mild electrical shocks have been transmitted through their headsets. We have investigated these cases and found them to be related to environmental causes such as customers walking on carpeting, wearing clothing that discharges static electricity (wool, etc), or even using exercise equipment such as treadmills. Low humidity in the air can also make it more likely that you will receive shocks from objects such as doorknobs, clothing, other people, and electronic equipment. Static charges discharged through the headset will not cause any harm, and do not indicate an issue with the headset itself.

Well, excuse me, but I’ve never received static shocks from any other ear buds or headphones I’ve ever used, so I consider this an issue with Bose ear buds. And no, the shocks are NOT pleasant…

Check it out!

Jerry Danzig


Gee, Bose, it’s not fair to blame Jerry if your product shocks him if he tries to use it. And “pain” is considered “harm”, at least in most definitions. There’s not much point in returning the earbuds for repair or replacement if the problems inherent in the product. Since Jerry’s not cool with random electric shocks to his inner ear, (there’s just no pleasing some people,) he might want to use our delightful Consumerist techniques to convince someone with authority at Bose to let him return his product and get his money back. He was looking for superior sound quality, not involuntary electroshock therapy.

(photo:The Joy Of The Mundane)

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