Non-studded winter tires
Non-studded winter tires or studless winter tires, allow more flexibility in deciding when to change tyres, both in autumn and in spring. One characteristic of non-studded winter tires is lower tyre noise, as they roll smoothly and silently on the road surface. This is not to say however that non-studded winter tires are recommended for year round use, as these tyres are primarily winter tires with characteristics suited to winter conditions. In warmer conditions non-studded winter tires wear rapidly, and as the rubber compound softens their performance becomes impaired.
When correctly used however, non-studded winter tires can actually increase safety during those times of the year when conditions may change rapidly, particularly in terms of changes in temperature. With this in mind it is a good idea to fit non-studded winter tires well before conditions actually become slippery, and to use them until winter is definitely over. The performance of non-studded winter tires is based on the principle of steeply angled laminae, that open during acceleration or braking. In many European countries non-studded winter tires are the only winter tyre option, as the use of studded tyres is not permitted.
If you are wondering whether or not non-studded winter tires might suit your needs, you can read more about the differences between non-studded winter tires and studded tyres here.