Sony has today announced a set of in-ear headphones which are packed with technology, ready for an Augmented Reality future but don’t have the advanced noise cancelling Sony has become a market leader in – in fact, they feature a wide gaping hole to let the real world in – Sony LinkBuds are an entirely new concept.

It’s what Sony describe as an “open ring design” with audio transparency that other in-ear buds need to use advanced microphones to achieve.

The idea is, you’re always wearing them, always listening – to both the music you love, and the real world around you.

This is not the first time Sony has tried this “always wearable” concept, but perhaps the market has matured more and is ready for this.

If you’re on the lounge, enjoying a podcast, or perhaps gaming and someone calls your name – you’ll hear them.

But it’s more than just an open hole, the technology is build to ensure high quality sound, while also letting in the outside world – not uncommon in some of the most expensive headphones on the market – but very new to in-ear headphones.

Having introduced the first in-ear headphones in 1982, it’s right that Sony lead this charge, they say you’ll barely notice you’re wearing them – which may be true, but given the size of them – other people will.

There are tap controls which are made to respond to you tapping the side of your head just in front of the ear – no touching the actual LinkBuds – pretty cool.

The always on nature of them is restricted slightly by the 5.5 hour battery life, with an additional 12 hours in the case – though a quick 10 mins in the case will pump 90 more minutes of playtime into the LinkBuds.

The Sony LinkBuds will be available in Australia from April at an RRP of $299.95