Full AirPods 3 Feature Breakdown: Everything Rumors Say We Can Expect
With Apple's third-generation AirPods believed to be arriving alongside the iPhone 13, which is just a few weeks away, we have compiled all of the coherent rumors from our news coverage to build a full picture of the features and upgrades coming to the company's next-generation wireless earbuds.
It is worth noting that the rumors below are aggregated from our coverage from a wide range of sources, including leakers, analysts, and publications. The reliability of each source varies, so some of the rumored features may be taken with a pinch of salt.
Nevertheless, the overall view of the third-generation AirPods rumors gives a good idea of many of the upcoming upgrades and what users can largely expect from the true wireless earbuds when they are officially revealed in the near future.
- AirPods Pro-like design with shorter stems and a larger in-ear shell.
- Shorter, wider charging case, with a similar design to the AirPods Pro's charging case.
- No replaceable ear tips, according to images of early Chinese counterfeits that show no sign of silicone tips nor any space for them within the charging case. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman initially claimed last year that the third-generation AirPods would feature replaceable ear tips like AirPods Pro, but this is now questionable in light of the design of the counterfeits and other purported supply-chain renders.
- Next-generation wireless chip, replacing the Apple H1 headphone chip. It is the same chip expected to come to the second-generation AirPods Pro, will feature a smaller System-in-Package and could offer improved efficiency, longer range, and better performance.
- Force sensor controls on the stems like the AirPods Pro, replacing the tap-based controls of the first and second-generation AirPods.
- Pressure relief system with vents brought over from the AirPods Pro, designed to equalize pressure within the ear to relieve discomfort when using the AirPods for a long period of time.
- Charging case with Qi wireless charging as standard, with no need to upgrade to a higher-spec charging case.
It would also not be unreasonable to expect the next-generation AirPods to feature improved sound quality and better battery life, but there have been no rumors about these aspects thus far.
The entry-level AirPods are expected to continue to forgo higher-end features such as Active Noise Cancelation and Transparency to remain clearly differentiated from the AirPods Pro. This may also explain the continued absence of in-ear silicone tips.
Apple's second-generation AirPods launched in March 2019, making them almost two and a half years old. If these new features do come to the third-generation AirPods, the new model could shape up to be a worthwhile upgrade for many users. 52audio believes that the new AirPods will be priced at $150.
Most indications seem to be pointing to Tuesday, September 14 as the most likely event date for the announcement of the third-generation AirPods and iPhone 13 models, and we could see event invites go out as soon as next week.