Apple Releases Third-Generation AirPods With Non-MagSafe Charging Case

In addition to unveiling the second-generation AirPods Pro today, Apple made the third-generation AirPods available with a Lightning charging case that lacks MagSafe wireless charging. This version of the case can be charged with a Lightning cable only.

AirPods 3 Charging Case
Pricing for the third-generation AirPods with a Lightning case is set at $169 in the United States, compared to $179 for the third-generation AirPods with a MagSafe case, so it seems like there is very limited value in choosing this new option.

Apple did not announce any other updates to the third-generation AirPods today, and the second-generation AirPods remain available for $129.

The new AirPods Pro feature an H2 chip for improved audio quality and up to 2x the amount of active noise cancellation, improvements to Transparency mode, a revamped charging case with Find My support and a built-in lanyard loop, Bluetooth 5.3, and more.

Related Roundup: AirPods 3
Buyer's Guide: AirPods (Neutral)
Related Forum: AirPods

Top Rated Comments

HeavenDynamic Avatar
20 weeks ago
OK, but why?
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
burnout8488 Avatar
20 weeks ago

The AP3 wireless case can't charge with a cable (like the Apple Watch).

Yes it can - per the specs on : The Lightning Charging Case works with the Lightning connector. The MagSafe Charging Case works wirelessly with MagSafe charger and Qi-certified chargers or with the Lightning connector.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
brofkand Avatar
20 weeks ago

The decision is simple: they wanted to save money and probably physical space by not offering both wireless and wired charging in the same device. It's a user option.

The AP3 wireless case can't charge with a cable (like the Apple Watch).

I will likely buy the one that charges from a cable. Wireless would be yet *another* charger to take on the road. I'd buy the non-wireless-charging version even if they were the same price; the $10 discount is a nice bonus but the decision has nothing to do with price and everything to do with convenience.

ALSO, I suspect (but don't know) that if the EU ever decides to require standardization on USB-C chargers, Apple will just stop selling the Lightning-wired version in the EU.
You've never seen AirPods cases have you? They all have a Lightning port on them.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mcru21 Avatar
20 weeks ago
this is hilariously stupid
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
_Spinn_ Avatar
20 weeks ago

OK, but why?
Yeah no kidding.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Saladin12 Avatar
20 weeks ago

Read the specs for the new ones. They pretty clearly read as either/or.
The standard case has MagSafe and Lightning as standard... This is a new SKU with JUST lightning - nothing else has changed...

So you either get AirPods (3rd Gen) with MagSafe + Lightning or just with Lightning
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone trade in

Apple Adjusts Trade-In Values for iPhones, Macs, and More

Wednesday January 25, 2023 9:40 am PST by
After announcing new Mac and HomePod models last week, Apple adjusted its trade-in values for select devices in the United States. iPhone trade-in values decreased by up to $80, and most Android smartphones also went down. Mac trade-in values remained unchanged or increased by up to $40 depending on the model, while some Apple Watch models increased in value and others decreased. Trade-in...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Side Perspective Feature Purple

iPhone 15 Pro Expected Later This Year With These 7 Exclusive Features

Tuesday January 24, 2023 4:53 pm PST by
Apple's next-generation iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max are expected to be announced in September as usual. Already, rumors suggest the devices will have at least seven exclusive features not available on the standard iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus. An overview of the seven features rumored to be exclusive to iPhone 15 Pro models:A17 chip: iPhone 15 Pro models will be equipped with an A17...
Mac mini M2 2023

New 256GB Mac Mini and 512GB MacBook Pro Have Slower SSD Speeds Than Previous Models

Tuesday January 24, 2023 1:11 pm PST by
While the new Mac mini with the M2 chip has a lower $599 starting price, the base model with 256GB of storage has slower SSD read and write speeds compared to the previous-generation model with the M1 chip and 256GB of storage. A teardown of the new Mac mini shared by YouTube channel Brandon Geekabit reveals that the 256GB model is equipped with only a single 256GB storage chip, while the...
apple tv 4k red image

Apple Releases tvOS 16.3

Tuesday January 24, 2023 10:10 am PST by
Apple today released tvOS 16.3, the third major point update to the tvOS 16 operating system that originally came out in September. Available for the Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD, tvOS 16.3 comes six weeks after tvOS 16.2, an update that added Apple Music Sing. The tvOS 16.3 update can be downloaded over the air through the Settings app on the ‌‌‌‌Apple TV‌‌‌‌ by going to System > Software...
watchOS 9 Feature

Apple Releases watchOS 9.3 With New Watch Face, Bug Fixes

Monday January 23, 2023 10:06 am PST by
Apple today released watchOS 9.3, the third major update to the watchOS 9 operating system that first launched in September. watchOS 9.3 comes over a month after watchOS 9.2, an update that added new Workout functionality and Crash Detection optimizations. watchOS 9.3 can be downloaded for free through the Apple Watch app on the iPhone by opening it up and going to General > Software Update. ...
iOS 16

iOS 16.3 for iPhone Launching Next Week With These 4 New Features

Friday January 20, 2023 11:43 am PST by
In a recent press release, Apple confirmed that iOS 16.3 will be released to the public next week. The software update will be available for the iPhone 8 and newer and includes a handful of new features, changes, and bug fixes. Below, we've recapped bigger features in iOS 16.3, including support for physical security keys as a two-factor authentication option for Apple ID accounts, worldwide ...

Hands-On With the New M2 Pro Mac Mini

Tuesday January 24, 2023 1:45 pm PST by
The new M2-series MacBook Pro and Mac mini models launched today, marking the debut of the first M2 Pro and M2 Max chips. We have the M2 Pro Mac mini on hand, and thought we'd take a look at the machine and do a series of benchmarks to see how it fits into Apple's lineup. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Base model Mac mini machines come with either an M2 or M2 Pro...
Ventura Macs Feature Blue

Apple Releases macOS Ventura 13.2

Monday January 23, 2023 10:09 am PST by
Apple today released macOS Ventura 13.2, the second major update to the macOS Ventura operating system initially released in October. macOS Ventura 13.2 comes more than a month after macOS Ventura 13.1, an update that added the Freeform app and other changes. The ‌macOS Ventura‌ 13.2 update can be downloaded for free on all eligible Macs using the Software Update section of System...