Apple AirPods Overview Updated March 11, 2020

Apple AirPods

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

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302 'AirPods' stories

October 2015 - March 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 March 11

Apple today released a fun new commercial for its new AirPods Pro wireless earbuds, released last October. The ad centers around an AirPods Pro wearing woman who uses transparency mode to do errands around the city whilst switching to noise cancellation mode to be transported into the music.

Not that the AirPods Pro particularly need marketing, the buds have been sold out basically since launch. Apple currently quotes a month-long delivery delay if you order now from the Apple Online Store. Watch the ad after the break …

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Logitech has launched a new three three-in-one wireless charging dock for the iPhone, AirPods, and Apple Watch.

Beautifully crafted and meticulously engineered, the $129.99 Logitech POWERED 3-in-1 Dock offers a new home for your iPhone, AirPods and Apple Watch all at once. Finally, you can have a seamless charging experience worthy of the products you rely on every day—all in a compact form that fits perfectly on your nightstand or desk. POWERED 3-in-1  Dock is available in graphite and white.

Two other products were announced at the same time …

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AirPods Stories March 9

Two years ago supply chain analyst Ming-Chi Kuo told investors that Apple was producing high-end, over-ear headphones with features similar to AirPods.

Today we have our first look at the design of Apple’s new headphones before they’re actually announced. 9to5Mac has discovered two icons representing light and dark versions of Apple’s high-end headphones in iOS 14 code.

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AirPods Stories March 7

A few intriguing reports over the past several weeks have suggested that Apple is developing an entry-level version of AirPods Pro for release sometime this year. On the surface, it’s hard to imagine what “entry-level” means in reference to the AirPods lineup, but there’s one clear possibility.

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AirPods Stories February 24

AirBands are Apple Watch bands designed to hold your AirPods, what do you think?

Every so often, a product pops up on Kickstarter that seems one-half genius and one-half crazy. AirBand is an Apple Watch band designed to hold your AirPods and seems to fit that mold perfectly.

AirPods Stories February 22

Several reports have suggested that Apple is planning to release new over-ear headphones during the first half of this year, likely to complement the rest of its AirPods lineup. Now, YouTuber Jon Prosser has shared an image on Twitter claiming to show new Apple headphones in Target’s inventory system.

Update: Target inventory also references new Apple TV, iPod touch, and Apple Watch bands

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