The tinkle at the high-end is certainly better than before, and there's improved bass as well. So they're more than good enough if sound quality is not something you are bothered about. If you're going to be buying an iPhone 5 or one of the new iPods, you'll be getting some marginally better earphones than you might have expected, so that's a good thing.
But for anyone thinking of buying these things separately for £25/$30 – forget it. That price is utterly ludicrous.
For that money you could bag yourself a decent pair of Sennheisers – low end ones admittedly – but they would still be head and shoulders better than the Apple EarPods. In fact, we challenge you to find a pair of £25 earphones on Amazon that sound worse than this - you won't be able to. More at techradar.
As inclusions with a phone they are no doubt better than most, but with Sennheisers so cheap now I would never buy them standalone.