Update: Powerbeats 3 available to buy at Amazon now, $199 in four colors with free shipping.
Following the launch of the W1-equipped Beats Solo3 on-ear headphones, Beats has now launched the latest iteration of its Powerbeats wireless earphones, the Powerbeats 3, making it the second audio peripheral to ship with the Apple W1 chip, which enables easy instantaneous pairing between Apple devices.
The Powerbeats 3 feature up to 12 hour battery life on a single charge, with a ‘Fast Fuel’ 5 minute top up charge providing an hour of playtime in a hurry. You can order the Powerbeats 3 from Apple today, priced at $199.95.
The Powerbeats were first announced at Apple’s September media event last month, as part of Apple’s iPhone 7 pitch — which lacks a 3.5mm headphone jack — that wireless is the future. The earbuds are shipping just ahead of AirPods, Apple’s ‘truly wireless’ buds with the W1 chip and are set to be released by the end of the month.
The Powerbeats connect wirelessly to the iPhone over Bluetooth but still have a wire connecting the two earbuds together. Apple touts 12 hour battery life for the Powerbeats, which is impressive for audio headphones of this form factor.
The previous iteration of the product, the Powerbeats 2, only claimed a six hour battery life. The longevity of the new Powerbeats 3 can be largely attributed to the inclusion of Apple’s exclusive W1 ship.
As well as efficiency gains, the W1 chip enables seamless pairing and setup with iPhone and Apple Watch. Once paired, the settings will also sync over iCloud to your Macs and iPads. You can see how this all works in our review of the Beats Solo3 wireless which also features the W1 system.
Of course, underneath the Powerbeats 3 use Class 1 Bluetooth to pair and connect so these work with any Bluetooth-compatible device, not just Apple products. The Fast Fuel feature gives a quick charge to the headphones, taking just five minutes to charge enough for an hour-long playback session.
Four sizes of eartips are included in the box to fit a wide range of human ears. The design of the buds themselves has also been changed with the third version for better ergonomics and confort.
The new Powerbeats are available to buy from the Apple Store now, quoting 3-5 day delivery estimates. The earphones come in five colors: White, Black, Shock Yellow, Flash Blue and Siren Red.
By the way, the Powerbeats 2 are on sale right now, so if you want a deal and don’t really care about the W1 stuff, pick them up at Best Buy for $99.