Apple AirPods Overview Updated January 15, 2020

Apple AirPods

Apple's truly wireless wireless and cord-free earbuds now with Qi support

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290 'AirPods' stories

October 2015 - January 2020

AirPods 1 Features

AirPods are Apple’s wireless, cord-free in-ear headphones, and were unveiled alongside the iPhone 7 on September 7, 2016. Priced at $159 they were originally announced to be available in late October, 2016, but were delayed until December 13.

They have a very similar form-factor to the company’s wired EarPods, with the obvious omission of a cable and the addition of Bluetooth connectivity. Despite this, early reports suggest that they are better at staying in your ears.

They offer Apple’s latest wireless pairing system, based on the W1 chip. They pair instantly, and that pairing propagates across all your Apple devices via iCloud. The secret sauce behind the new pairing system turned out to be all in the W1 chip in the headphones themselves, so it works with Bluetooth LE devices all the way back to the iPhone 5.

AirPods 2 Features

In March of 2019, Apple released AirPods 2. The new version is available for $199 with the wireless charging case, or available with the standard case for $159. Existing version 1 owners can purchase the wireless charging case separately for $79.

Version 2 moved away from the W1 chip to the new H1 chip to deliver up to 50 percent more talk time compared to the first generation. The H1 should also speed up switching between devices, with Apple saying version 2 should now connect two times faster. Version 2 also includes ‘Hey Siri’ support as well.

AirPods Pro

In October 2019, Apple announced AirPods Pro. The Pro model features “Active Noise Cancellation and superior, immersive sound in an all-new lightweight, in-ear design.” The new in-ear design of the Pro model makes for better noise cancellation. Apple says that the Pro headphones are sweat and water-resistant rated for IPX4. The box includes three different sizes of ear tips, which should make them relatively versatile.

AirPods Pro vs. AirPods comparison

There are five major features that the Pro model has have that Version 2 don’t:

  • Active noise cancellation
  • Audio Transparency mode
  • IPX4 water/sweat resistance
  • Adaptive EQ
  • In-ear design with three sets of tips

How AirPods Pro and AirPods gen 2 compare

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AirPods Stories January 15

Report: Apple sold nearly 60 million AirPods in 2019, grabbing 71% of totally wireless headphone revenue

We heard late last year from Bloomberg that AirPods shipments were expected to double year over year, and now a recent report backs up the huge growth expectations of Apple’s fully wireless earphones estimating nearly 60 million sales that took almost three-quarters of revenue from the burgeoning totally wireless headphone market.

Latest Bang & Olufsen E8 AirPods competitors double battery-life to 35 hours

The third generation of the Bang & Olufsen E8 true in-ear wireless headphones have been announced, more than doubling the battery-life from 16 hours to 35 hours…

AirPods Stories January 6

Harman Kardon returns to headphones after six years to take on Apple’s AirPods

Harman Kardon is perhaps best known to Apple fans for its transparent Soundsticks speakers once sold in Apple Stores, and a popular pairing with a range of Macs. But the company also used to make headphones, and it has now returned to the market ready to go head-to-head with Apple’s AirPods …

AirPods Stories January 3

With the launch of the second-generation AirPods last year, Apple has offered customers the option to include a custom engraving on the charging case. Today, Apple announced new options to customize the AirPods charging case with larger text and emoji for the first time.

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AirPods Stories December 27, 2019

Audio not working for one of your AirPods? Here’s how to fix it

While Apple’s AirPods and AirPods Pro offer what many see as the best truly wireless earbud experience, there are times when they don’t work as expected. Read on for some ways to fix a left or right AirPod that won’t play audio.

AirPods Stories December 26, 2019

AirPods and AirPods Pro were two of the most popular gifts this holiday season – even though available supply started to dwindle well before Christmas. If you were gifted AirPods or AirPods Pro this year, here are some tips, tricks, and accessories to get you started.

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