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Apple AirPods

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AirPods offers a cord-free wireless audio experience with up to 5 hours of battery life. They are rechargeable through the included case that get you up to 24 hours on a single charge. AirPods 2 and AirPods Pro support wireless (Qi) charging, Hey Siri, and include the H1 chip.

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

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
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Here’s what makes AirPods Pro 2 special (and more reasons are on the way)

Apple continues to deliver updates to its best wireless earbuds: AirPods Pro 2. Gen-two hardware (Lightning or USB-C) launched with impressive Active Noise Cancellation, Transparency, and more. A year later, Apple dropped a big update that added Adaptive Audio mode, Conversation Awareness, and more. Later this year, Apple will release another feature update that adds even more enhancements.

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New accessory setup in iOS 18 is good for us, and for Apple

New accessory setup in iOS 18 (screengrab shown)

When Apple first launched AirPods back in 2016, it also introduced a whole new accessory setup process, designed to avoid the usual pain point of Bluetooth pairing.

For almost eight years, it seemed like the company wanted to keep this exclusive to its own headphones, with competitors unable to take advantage of it. But all that changes in iOS 18

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Soon you’ll be able to tailor AirPods Pro’s Adaptive Audio to your liking

AirPods iOS 18

Apple announced several new features coming to AirPods later this year, like detection of head nods and shakes, voice isolation, and a special dynamic tracking feature for gaming.

One change it didn’t announce, but which is available in the latest AirPods firmware beta, is the ability to tailor last year’s Adaptive Audio feature to your exact liking.

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Your future AirPods case may look a lot like a modern iPod nano

Apple patents new AirPods case with interactive display

Sometimes with Apple, what’s old becomes new again. Designs and product names are at times revisited as the inspiration for new products. AirPods and HomePods, for example, play off the strong brand awareness for the iPod.

According to a filed patent, Apple may take things a step further with the iPod inspiration, creating an AirPods case that looks and works a lot like a modern iPod nano.

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When are AirPods Max 2 coming? Here’s what the latest reporting says

AirPods Max

Apple’s AirPods Max launched all the way back in 2020, and the product has received zero updates in its four years on the market. Now, with competitors like the Sonos Ace entering the headphone scene, many shoppers are wondering if Apple has a new AirPods Max 2 model in the works.

Here’s what the latest reporting says about when to expect the new AirPods Max 2.

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Enhance your AirPods with these essential accessories [Video]

Aside from the iPhone, the AirPods Pro might be my most used product in the world of Apple products. I use them to work out, for work calls, to walk my dog, to get chores around the house done, and so much more. They work even better with the more Apple products you have because of the magic of auto-switching and continuity. However, as straightforward as AirPods might seem, there are numerous accessories available that can significantly enhance your user experience. Whether it’s protection, improved functionality, or simply keeping them clean, these accessories can make a world of difference.

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Mass production of two new AirPods models to start in May, targeting fall release

Via Mark Gurman in the latest edition of his Power On newsletter, Apple suppliers are gearing up to begin mass production of the new AirPods, starting in May. AirPods 3 will be replaced by a new lineup of two models.

The new AirPods models represent a new two tier lineup for the non-Pro buds. They will both get an updated design, improved fit and charge via USB-C. The higher-end of the pair will also sport active noise cancellation and Find My locating for the case, similar to AirPods Pro.

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Apple changing the leadership of its audio team ahead of major updates to AirPods

AirPods Pro 2 - Apple audio products

Although the iPhone is Apple’s flagship product, accessories such as AirPods have become extremely important to the company in recent years. And as Apple works on new products in this segment, it has now changed the leadership of its team responsible for audio products, which includes not only the company’s headphones, but also the HomePod.

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