AirPods

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Introduced in late 2016, Apple's AirPods are wire-free Bluetooth earbuds that incorporate the custom-designed Apple W1 chip for a quick connection to iOS and Mac devices. AirPods connect easily to any device connected to the same iCloud account and support touch-based gestures to do things like activate Siri.

AirPods have no wire connecting the two earbuds, and the design is similar to the older EarPods line. AirPods have a five hour battery life, which is extended to 24 hours through the included charging case.

'AirPods' How Tos

How to Set Up Your New AirPods

AirPods, introduced last December, are Apple's completely wire-free earphones that have a W1 chip inside for simple pairing between devices. AirPods work like magic, and while they're easy to set up, the process may not be intuitive to all users who received AirPods this Christmas, so we thought we'd share some quick, easy to digest instructions. Remove the AirPods from the packaging. Leave the AirPods in AirPods case. Power on your iPhone or iPad, unlock it, and go to the Home screen (aka the main app screen). Open up the lid to your AirPods case. Hold the AirPods case with open lid next to your iPhone or iPad. Your iOS device will recognize the AirPods and you'll see a popup to connect your AirPods. Tap "Connect." You'll be instructed to press and hold on the back button of the AirPods case. Press it for a few seconds, and the popup on your iPhone will change to "Connecting." When the connection is complete, the popup will display the battery life for both the AirPods and the case. That's all there is to it. Once this setup process has been completed, your AirPods will re-pair to your iOS device whenever you open up the case lid. This re-pairing process takes just a few seconds, so your AirPods are essentially ready to go whenever you pull them out. Your AirPods are linked to your iCloud account, so once you pair them with one device, your other devices know they exist. You can switch connections between your devices through the standard Bluetooth settings options, where AirPods will be listed on any device that you're

How to Set Your AirPods to Change Music Tracks in iOS 11

If you have AirPods, there are new features you should be aware of in iOS 11, including a new option to change tracks directly on the earphones using a double tap gesture. The new gestures are available alongside current gestures, which allow users to summon Siri with a tap. All of the options for your AirPods can be accessed in the Settings app while the AirPods are connected to your iPhone or iPad. Here's how: Open your AirPods case while your AirPods are near your iPhone so they connect. Open the Settings app. Select "Bluetooth." Tap the little "i" button next to your AirPods. From this menu, you can customize the name of your AirPods, enable or disable manual ear detection, choose to use the left or right AirPod microphone, and most importantly, choose what happens when you double tap an AirPod. You can set different gestures for the left and the right AirPod. Options include Siri, Play/Pause, Off, Next Track, and Previous Track. The latter two options are new in iOS 11. To set a gesture, you only need to tap it. If you choose Next Track for one AirPod and Previous Track for another, you can quickly and easily switch between songs that are playing, without the need to invoke

How to Use iOS 10.3's New Find My AirPods Feature

iOS 10.3 introduces "Find My AirPods," a new feature designed to make it easier to keep track of Apple's recently released wireless earphones. Find My AirPods has its limitations because it's not able to work when the AirPods aren't connected to an iOS device via Bluetooth, but the feature can help you locate AirPods lost nearby and it gives clues as to where your AirPods might be found if they're lost out of the range of the iPhone. It's worth noting that Find My AirPods only works for the AirPods themselves -- it can't locate a lost AirPods Case, nor does it work when the AirPods are disconnected from the iPhone and stored in the case. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. How to Access Find My AirPods Find My AirPods is located within the "Find My iPhone" app on iOS devices and iCloud.com. If the AirPods are out of the case and connected to the iPhone, they'll show up on the Find My iPhone map just like an iPad, iPhone, Apple Watch, or Mac.

'AirPods' Guides

Tips and Tricks for Getting the Most Out of Your New AirPods

AirPods were a hot ticket item this holiday season, selling out from Apple and other retailers. We're guessing quite a few MacRumors readers got new AirPods during the holidays, so we thought we'd share some super handy tips and tricks that'll help you get the most out of your new earphones. AirPods Requirements To use all of the below features, you're going to need to install iOS 10.2 or later, and for some features, iOS 11 or later is required. On the Apple Watch, watchOS 3 or later is required, and on Mac, macOS 10.12 Sierra or later is required. Devices that support iOS 10.2 or later include the iPhone 5 and later, the iPad mini 2 and later, the iPad Air and later, the 6th-generation iPod touch, and all iPad Pro models. All Apple Watch models work with AirPods, as do Macs that support Handoff functionality. To take full advantage of AirPods, an iCloud account is required, but if you have an Apple device, you likely use iCloud regularly. Customize Tap Functionality Your AirPods are equipped with accelerometers and other hardware that allow them to respond to a double tap, and though it isn't obvious, these gestures can be customized to your liking. Here's how: Make sure your AirPods are connected to your iPhone or iPad, either when you're wearing them or with the case open and nearby your device. Open up the Settings app. Choose "Bluetooth." Next to the AirPods in the Bluetooth menu, tap the little "i" button. Select "Left" and "Right" to customize what your AirPods do when you double tap them. Each one can be set to a separate

'AirPods' Articles

Apple Investigating AirPods That Allegedly Caught Fire in Florida

Florida resident Jason Colon was listening to his AirPods while at the gym this week when they started to malfunction, and a white smoke allegedly started pouring out. According to Colon, he then left the AirPods sitting on a piece of gym equipment and ran to get help, and when he got back, one of the AirPods was charred and destroyed. "It was already like this. It was already popped. I didn't see it happen, but I mean, it was already fried! You can see flame damage," Colon told a local channel 8 news station. It appears no one else at the gym was around to see what happened to the AirPod, so it's not clear if the device did spontaneously explode. There have been no prior reports of issues with AirPods, but it is not uncommon for iPhones and other devices to see one off battery issues that can result in fire. According to an Apple spokesperson, Apple is investigating the incident and will be reaching out to Colon to figure out what

MacRumors Giveaway: Win Custom-Painted Space Gray AirPods From BlackPods

For this week's giveaway, we've once again teamed up with BlackPods to offer MacRumors readers a chance to win a pair of AirPods that have been custom-painted black or space gray to better match darker devices. We've given away black AirPods in the past, but this time around, BlackPods has an all new BlackPods Aero in a metallic space gray finish that's a nice alternative to the standard white AirPods that Apple offers. If you haven't seen BlackPods before, the company takes a standard pair of Apple's AirPods and then paints them using a proprietary coating system. There's a three-phase finishing process for a high-quality coating of paint that's designed not to chip, fade, scuff, or wear off during usage. Each pair of BlackPods is completed by hand and then given a rigorous inspection to make sure the finish is flawless. BlackPods offers several finish options -- the BlackPods Classic with a high-gloss black coating, the BlackPods Stealth with a matte satin coating, and the new BlackPods Aero Space Gray with a lighter gray metallic coating. BlackPods Classic are priced at $279, while the BlackPods Stealth and the BlackPods Aero Space Gray are priced at $299. That's a $120 to $140 premium over Apple's standard AirPods, but BlackPods is offering one of the only methods to get a unique black or gray finish for your AirPods. In addition to selling completed sets of painted AirPods, BlackPods also has a service that allows customers to send in their previously purchased AirPods for customization at a lower price. The process costs between $99 and $119

Ming-Chi Kuo Expects Upgraded AirPods to Launch in Mid to Late 2018

Apple will release an upgraded version of AirPods in the second half of 2018, according to KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. An excerpt from Kuo's latest research note, a copy of which was obtained by MacRumors:Media reports over the past few days on brisk AirPods demand and Apple struggling to keep up with holiday season demand align with our findings and positive predictions on AirPods in several previous reports. […] In 2018, we predict AirPods shipments will grow 100% YoY to 26-28mn units. We forecast the ASP of RFPCB for upgraded AirPods in 2H18 may increase, further benefiting business momentum of Unitech and Compeq.Kuo said one internal change on the second-generation AirPods will include a "smaller quartz component," but he didn't provide any further details about new outward-facing features or improvements to expect. Kuo said the new AirPods will continue to be assembled by Taiwanese manufacturer Inventec, with individual components supplied by fellow Taiwanese companies such as Unitech, Compeq, TXC, and HLJ. Apple will also be releasing a new inductive AirPods charging case that will enable the wireless earphones to be charged with its new AirPower charging mat, which it said launches at some point in 2018. Apple teased the AirPower mat at its iPhone X event back in September. It will be able to charge the Apple Watch Series 3, an iPhone X or iPhone 8 model, and AirPods inside the new charging case simultaneously. As for the current AirPods, Kuo said Apple's suppliers are unable to make them quick enough to fully satisfy what he believes

Apple is Currently Sold Out of AirPods Until January

If you were planning to purchase AirPods as a last-minute holiday gift, it may be challenging to find a pair in time for Christmas. Apple's wireless earphones are currently estimated for delivery in early January if ordered today from Apple's online store in the United States, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, and several other countries. AirPods are also currently out of stock at most of Apple's retail stores around the world, and at authorized resellers such as Best Buy, Macy's, Target, Walmart, and Verizon in the United States. Bottom line: they're hard to find anywhere. At $159, AirPods are a more affordable gift idea than many Apple products, which may be causing stronger demand than Apple can keep up with. If you are still hunting for AirPods, there may be one option. AT&T appears to have stock on its website, but you may have to pay an extra $14.95 for express delivery within 2-3 business days, and there is no guarantee they'll arrive before Christmas. Other gifts available by Christmas for under $200, and that an Apple fan is likely to appreciate, include the Apple TV 4K, BeatsX, an official Apple-branded iPhone case, Apple Watch bands, or simply an Apple Store or Apple Music gift card. Apple's online store is now offering free next-day delivery for all in-stock items ordered by 3 p.m. local time on December 22 in the United

KGI: AirPods Shipments Will Double Next Year Given Strong Demand

AirPods will remain one of Apple's most popular accessories in 2018, with shipments likely to double to an estimated 26-28 million units on a year-over-year basis, according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Kuo said there has been strong demand for AirPods, which he views as the most important accessory in Apple's wireless ecosystem. His prediction implies AirPods shipments will total 13-14 million units in 2017. An excerpt from Kuo's latest research note with investment firm KGI Securities, a copy of which was obtained by MacRumors:We believe demand for AirPods has been strong, and note that the shipping time of the product on Apple's official shopping website has shortened to 1-3 days, mainly thanks to an improved assembly process and increased capacity from Luxshare as the new assembler […] We expect AirPods to remain one of the most popular Apple accessories in 2018, with shipments likely to rise 100% YoY to 26-28mn units next year.Chinese company Luxshare could become the main assembler of AirPods in 2018, with a higher order allocation than fellow supplier Inventec, after improving its assembly process and increasing production capacity. Apple doesn't break out AirPods sales like it does with iPhones, iPads, and Macs. Instead, it groups the wireless earphones under its "Other Products" category, alongside Apple TV, Apple Watch, Beats, iPods, and other accessories. Apple reported revenue of $3.2 billion from its "Other Products" category last quarter, up 36 percent year over year. Last month, on an earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook said he was

Apple AirPods vs. Google Pixel Buds

The Pixel Buds, Google's $159 headphones designed to compete with Apple's AirPods, finally launched this week so we thought we'd pit the two devices against one another to see how they measure up. While the AirPods are widely loved and have received mostly positive reviews from customers and media sites, things aren't looking quite as rosy for the Pixel Buds. In a lot of ways, the Pixel Buds don't measure up to the AirPods, and in the video below, we compare design, features, sound quality, comfort, and other metrics. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Pixel Buds and AirPods both cost $159 and are Bluetooth earphones designed for the Google and Apple ecosystems, respectively, but when it comes to design, they're quite a bit different. The AirPods are entirely wire-free, but the Pixel Buds have an adjustable cord that connects the two earpieces together. Each is stored in a case that provides extra battery. Both earphones support touch and tap gestures to do things like activate Siri or Google Assistant and control music playback, but each one has shortcomings. There's no volume control on the AirPods, meaning you need to use Siri or your connected device to adjust volume, and on the Pixel Buds, there's no gesture for switching tasks, so you need to use Google Assistant. By the way, when connected to an iPhone, Google Assistant functionality doesn't work. AirPods have a nifty feature that stops music playback when an AirPod is removed from the ear, and there's no equivalent feature on the Pixel Buds. The Pixel Buds do have a unique

MacRumors Giveaway: Win Custom-Painted Black AirPods From BlackPods

Our BlackPods giveaways have been extremely popular with MacRumors readers, so this week, we've once again teamed up with BlackPods to offer you a chance to win a pair of AirPods that have been custom-painted black to better match darker devices. Black AirPods pair especially well with the new iPhone X, which features an OLED display with a thin black bezel even on the iPhone X models that come in silver. BlackPods takes a standard pair of Apple AirPods and then paints them black using a proprietary coating system. The company uses a three-phase finishing process for a high-quality coating of paint that's not going to chip, fade, scuff, or wear off. Each pair of BlackPods is completed by hand and is given a rigorous inspection to ensure a flawless finish. There are two options when it comes to BlackPods -- the BlackPods classic, with a high-gloss look, and the BlackPods Stealth, which has a matte satin finish. BlackPods charges $279 for the BlackPods Classic and $299 for the BlackPods Stealth, a $120 to $140 premium over Apple's standard AirPods, but it's the only way to get a unique black finish on your AirPods. Along with selling finished sets of painted AirPods, BlackPods also lets customers send previously purchased AirPods in for customization. This process costs $99 for the glossy black and $119 for the matte black, and it takes approximately 10 days to complete. Painting of both the AirPods and the case is included in the price. Because BlackPods are re-painted AirPods, the full AirPods functionality remains intact, with a W1 chip for simple

Trio of Apple Suppliers Report Revenues for October

Three Apple suppliers shared revenue reports today, providing a glimpse at how their contributions to Apple's latest product line-up affected their income in the month of October. Unsurprisingly, suppliers for Apple's flagship iPhone X, Pegatron and Wistron, both had good news to share with investors. Pegatron reported consolidated revenues of $5.52 billion for October 2017, representing a 8.34 percent increase on month and 10.14 percent increase on year. Wistron had consolidated revenues of US$2.98 billion, a 12.37 percent increase on month and a 36.81 percent increase on year. Elsewhere, Taiwan-based AirPods manufacturer Inventec saw revenues rise to $1.43 billion for October, representing a modest 0.45 percent increase on month but a more substantial 16.54 percent increase on year. Apple switched to an all-glass casing for this year's entire iPhone lineup in order to support wireless charging, with Pegatron benefitting as the exclusive supplier of the wireless charger. Meanwhile, in its push to manufacture products locally in India, Apple chose Wistron to be the first original equipment manufacturer for 2017 iPhones in the country. Inventec's more staggered rise in sales mirrors Apple's gradual achievement of supply/demand balance for AirPods. The popular earphones were introduced in September 2016, but prior to August, had been in extremely short supply, with a typical wait time of six weeks from order to delivery. By the end of September however, shipping estimates improved to 3 to 5 business days. Looking ahead, Foxconn, Pegatron and Wistron

Suppliers Expect Rising Revenues in Q4 2017 from Sales of AirPods and Apple Watch S3

Upstream suppliers are expected to see strong growth in wearable product operations in the fourth quarter of this year thanks to rising sales of Apple's AirPods and Apple Watch range, according to sources in the supply chain (via DigiTimes). Quanta, Iventec, Universal Scientific Industrial (USI), as well as Foxconn subsidiaries Shunshin Tech and Luxshare-ICT are all expected to benefit from increased sales in Q4 2017, as Apple achieves supply/demand balance for its AirPods and consumer interest in the latest Apple Watch models increases into the holiday season. Quanta and USI have been long-term supply-chain partners of the Apple Watch series and are expected to see a significant revenue contribution from the orders, while Shunsin has just recently joined the supply chain to provide SiP services and will begin processing related orders in February or March 2018, the sources noted. As for the AirPods, the sources pointed out that the shortages have already eased and Apple has also increased its orders for the device.Inventec is the manufacturer of the AirPods, while the device's proprietary W1 chip that allows seamless pairing is supplied by Luxshare-ICT. In addition to the orders, Luxshare-ICT also supplies connectors, cables and antennas for Mac and iPhone products. AirPods now ship from the online Apple Store in just three to five business days in the United States, Canada, U.K., Australia, and several other countries around the world. Prior to August, the popular earphones had been in extremely short supply, with a typical wait time of six weeks from order

AirPods Shipping Estimates Improve to 3 to 5 Business Days

Apple is closing in on its aim to achieve supply/demand balance for its AirPods, with the popular earphones now shipping from the online Apple Store in just three to five business days in the United States, Canada, U.K., Australia, and several other countries around the world. According to Apple's U.S. website, AirPods ordered today will be delivered between October 4 and October 6, while U.K. customers ordering today are being quoted delivery dates between October 3 and October 5. These are the best estimates Apple has offered since the AirPods launched in December 2016. AirPods have been in extremely short supply since they became available for purchase, with a typical wait time of six weeks from order to delivery. Only in August did stock begin steadily improving, with shipping estimates dropping to four weeks and then two to three weeks. Earlier this month, estimates improved to one to two weeks, before hitting three to five business days today. During Apple's third quarter earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook said Apple had boosted AirPods production capacity and was "working very hard" to get AirPods to customers as quickly as possible. Occasionally, Apple retail stores have received stock and third-party retailers like Best Buy have been able to offer AirPods with faster shipping on a regular basis, but those stocks have usually run out fast. Costing $159, Apple's "truly wireless" AirPods have gained popularity due to their long battery life, capacious charge case, infrared sensors that detect when they're being worn, touch-based gestures, and a

AirPods Wireless Charging Case Rumored for December Launch at $69

During Tuesday's event, Apple revealed that the rumored new version of its AirPods headphones were not in fact the "AirPods 2," but simply a new inductive wireless charging case that users will be able to purchase as a replacement for their current charging cases. No release date or price was mentioned, but information reportedly sourced from Apple Switzerland (via MacPrime) [Google Translate] suggests a December launch date for the new AirPods wireless charging case, which will cost $69. Apple's out-of-warranty fee to repair or replace the AirPods charging case is $69, so a similar price point for the wireless charging version does make some sense. The only design change made to the new charging case is the placement of the LED battery indicator light, which has migrated from the inside of the case to the outside on the front. This way, when users place the case down on a Qi-compatible charging pad, they'll be able to see the battery level of the AirPods' case without needing to open the top. Apple will be launching its own Qi charging station -- called the AirPower mat -- sometime in 2018, but until then owners of the iPhone 8, iPhone X, and AirPods will need to purchase third-party charging pads. In regards to the new AirPods wireless charging case, it's still unclear if Apple will offer a version that also includes the AirPods themselves at the typical $159 price tag. The original AirPods launched in December of 2016.

Jaybird Announces RUN True Wireless Headphones With Charging Case for $180

Sport headphone company Jaybird today announced two new pairs of wireless headphones, including its first pair of truly wireless Bluetooth earbuds. The Jaybird RUN True Wireless Headphones feature a four-hour battery life and come with a pocket-sized charging case providing an additional eight hours, for a total of 12 hours of battery life on the go, while a five-minute charge gives around one hour of play time. Jaybird says the buds have a "double hydrophobic nano coating" that protects them from sweat and water damage. There's a single button on both earpieces that takes calls, starts and stops music, skips tracks, and activates Siri. The buds are also designed for one-ear use, allowing runners to stay more aware of their surroundings. The Jaybird mobile app lets users adjust the sound signature of the earbuds in the lows, miss, and highs, and includes a Find My Buds feature if they go missing. The app also supports sharing of Spotify running-themed playlists with other Jaybird users. At $180, the Jaybird RUN headphones are pricier than Apple's AirPods ($159) and come in two colors: Drift, which has white and silver metal accents, and Jet, which is black with silver metal accents. The company's second new pair of headphones are basically a redesign of its miniscule Freedom buds and still have a wire that connects them behind the neck, but the Freedom 2 are said to have an improved fit and greater comfort, with double the battery life (up to eight hours) and water resistance. The Freedom 2 headphones cost $149, and along with the new RUN earbuds

Apple Introduces New Second-Generation AirPods Case With Wireless Charging Support

At today's iPhone-centric event, Apple briefly introduced a new second-generation AirPods case that features support for wireless charging. The AirPods Case is physically identical to the current-generation AirPods Case, with the exception of a charging indicator light located on the outside of the case instead of the inside. Apple's new AirPods Case will work with the company's upcoming "AirPower" wireless charging mat, which will be able to charge the AirPods, the Apple Watch Series 3, and the iPhone X or iPhone 8 simultaneously. Apple does not yet appear to be offering the new AirPods Case either on a standalone basis or in a set with AirPods. It may be coming at a later date, as the AirPower charging accessory is not expected to ship until

Here's Your First Look at the New Version of Apple's AirPods

In yet another leak sourced from the iOS 11 GM, developer Steve Troughton-Smith has uncovered a render of the new version of Apple's AirPods. Troughton-Smith noted that while a render of the "iPhone X" has not been discovered within the firmware (yet), the LTE Apple Watch and now the new AirPods each have renders in the golden master of iOS 11. Image of new AirPods via @stroughtonsmith Unsurprisingly, the new AirPods look a lot like the old AirPods, with an all-white charging case and white buds. The case has the same clamshell design as the current model, but has one noticeable difference: the LED charging indicator "status light" has moved from the inside of the case to the outside. When the AirPods are in the case, the LED shows the charge status of the pods, but if they are removed from the case then the LED shows the status of the case itself. Green indicates charged, while an amber glow means less than one full charge remains. In today's short video, the LED appears to be flashing white, which Apple's support website currently explains as an indication that the AirPods are ready to be set up with another device, suggesting some of the same LED patterns will be on the new AirPods. …in full, animated glory 😂 pic.twitter.com/dbU6WaU1B4— Steve T-S (@stroughtonsmith) September 9, 2017 Last night, the first wave of iOS 11 GM leaks included references to "AirPods 1,2," which could be the updated version of the wire-free headphones that have been shared today. Of course, with just one image and a two-second clip it's impossible to say what other new features

MacRumors Giveaway: Win Custom-Painted Black AirPods From BlackPods

For this week's giveaway, we've once again teamed up with BlackPods to offer MacRumors readers a chance to win a pair of AirPods that have been painted black to better match darker devices. Our last BlackPods giveaway was one of the most popular we've done, so we thought we'd get a second pair of BlackPods out to one of you. If you missed our first giveaway, BlackPods takes a set of Apple's AirPods and then paints them using a proprietary coating system that's been designed just for the AirPods. It uses a three-phase finishing procedure for a high-quality finish, and each pair of BlackPods is completed by hand and given a "rigorous" quality inspection. BlackPods sells the BlackPods Classic in a high-gloss black finish, and the BlackPods Stealth in a matte satin finish. The company charges $279 for the BlackPods Classic, while the BlackPods Stealth are priced at $299. Apple's AirPods are normally priced at $159, so that's a $120 to $140 premium, but the finish is impeccable and is otherwise unobtainable. Along with selling finished sets of painted AirPods, BlackPods also allows customers to send previously purchased AirPods for customization. The painting service costs $99 for glossy black and $119 for matte black. The process takes approximately 10 days and covers both the AirPods and the Case. BlackPods are simply re-painted AirPods, so the functionality is the same as standard AirPods directly from Apple, with a W1 chip for simple pairing, long battery life, accelerometer-based ear detection, and gesture support. We have one full set of BlackPods to

AirPods Shipping Estimates Improve to 1 to 2 Weeks

Apple is one step closer to achieving supply/demand balance for its AirPods, and the highly desired earphones are now shipping out from the online Apple Store in just one to two weeks in the United States, Canada, UK, Australia, and several other countries around the world. According to Apple's website in the United States, AirPods ordered today will be delivered between September 21 and September 28, the best estimates we've seen since the AirPods became available for purchase. AirPods have been in short supply since launch. For many weeks, AirPods shipping estimates were at six weeks, but stock improved enough in early August that shipping estimates dropped to four weeks. Later in the month, estimates improved to two to three weeks before hitting one to two weeks today. At this rate, Apple will be close to achieving an adequate supply later this month or at the beginning of October. During Apple's third quarter earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook said Apple had boosted AirPods production capacity and was "working very hard" to get AirPods to customers as quickly as possible. Though AirPods have been hard to come by from the online Apple Store, Apple retail stores have occasionally received stock and third-party retailers like Best Buy and various carrier stores have been able to offer AirPods with faster shipping on a regular basis. Priced at $159, Apple's wire-free AirPods have been incredibly popular thanks to features like long battery life, a simple charge case, infrared sensors to detect when they're in the ear, touch-based gestures, and the W1

Pebble Founder Launches Kickstarter for iPhone 7/AirPods Battery Case 'PodCase'

After Pebble was acquired by Fitbit late last year, Pebble said that its hardware devices would continue to function as normal for at least another year, with any future support for its services heading into 2018 unclear. Today, Pebble founder Eric Migicovsky has revealed his next project, and it's a Kickstarter for a case aimed at the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus that also charges AirPods, called "PodCase" (via Engadget). The Kickstarter page describes the case as a "slim case" for carrying and charging both the iPhone and AirPods, thanks to a 2500 mAh battery. That'll provide up to one full charge for the iPhone 7 (with a 1,960 mAh battery), although not quite enough for a full charge of the iPhone 7 Plus (with a 2,900 mAh battery). That's also equivalent to "up to 40 AirPod charges," according to the PodCase's crowdfunding page. Keeping track of your AirPod charging case is a chore. It’s one more gadget to misplace, one more item to remember when you run out the door, and one more lump of plastic in your pocket. Drop it into your bag or purse and you might as well call search and rescue! Storing your AirPods with your phone seemed only natural to us. Charging an extra device every night is a pain. No one likes a mess of cables on their night stand, and remembering to charge your AirPods during the day isn't a great solution either. You plug your phone in every night anyway--why not charge your AirPods and your iPhone together? That's exactly what PodCase does. The case itself is charged through USB-C, so those with the newest MacBook models will be able to fuel

Apple's AirPods 'Dominating' Emerging Wireless Earbuds Market, Say Analysts

Apple's AirPods have dominated the "truly wireless" earphones market in the U.S. since launching in December, according to new market research conducted by NPD Group. The industry analyst's Retail Tracking Service found that AirPods accounted for 85 percent of over 900,000 wireless earbuds sold since the start of the year. Apple's success in the emerging market was put down to brand resonance, disruptive pricing, and excitement over the AirPods' W1 chip, which significantly improves the Bluetooth connection and facilitates transfers between different devices. "With a use case centering on frictionless access to Siri and other tasks initiated by voice, AirPods really act as an extension of the iPhone," said NPD executive director Ben Arnold, calling Apple's wireless earbuds "a computing device for the ear". Apple's early domination of the category will continue to challenge competing brands entering the totally wireless market. New entrants will have to provide some differentiation in features, sound quality, or associated services and applications in order to stand out. Consumer reception of wireless earbuds is still forming, even as their use case continues to evolve. As Alexa skills and other voice-first content diversifies, headphones, including totally wireless earbuds, are the leading candidate to be the next piece of hardware to drive digital assistant adoption.Standout competing brands cited by NPD Group included Samsung’s "headphones-slash-fitness tracker", IconX, which features an optical heart rate tracker and 4GB of memory for music storage, and The Dash

AirPods Shipping Estimates Improve to 2 to 3 Weeks

Shipping estimates for Apple's AirPods have improved to two to three weeks in many countries around the world, suggesting Apple is one step closer to achieving supply/demand balance for the much-desired earphones. Since the AirPods launched in December, stock has been in short supply. For many weeks, AirPods shipping estimates were at six weeks, but stock improved enough in early August that shipping estimates dropped to four weeks. At the new 2 to 3 week estimate, customers can expect to receive AirPods ordered today in early September. During Apple's third quarter earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook said AirPods capacity had been bumped up and that the company was "working very hard" to get AirPods to customers as quickly as possible. While Apple's own stock has been in flux online, Apple retail stores have occasionally received stock and third-party retailers like Best Buy have been able to offer AirPods with quicker shipping on a regular basis. Priced at $159, the wire-free AirPods have become a popular accessory largely due to Apple's W1 chip, which significantly improves the Bluetooth connection and facilitates simple and quick transfers between different devices. The AirPods are also equipped with infrared sensors to detect when they're in the ear, and they support touch-based gestures to activate Siri and perform other

AirPods Now Ship in 4 Weeks, Finally Down From 6 Weeks Estimate Since December

Apple has updated its online store today to indicate that AirPods are now estimated to ship in four weeks in the United States, Europe, and many other regions, down from a six-week estimate listed since launching in December. Apple hasn't disclosed AirPods sales numbers, but CEO Tim Cook has routinely said demand continues to significantly outweigh supply. Earlier this week, he revealed that Apple has increased production capacity for AirPods, which has perhaps led to the quicker turnaround time now quoted.We're also seeing incredible enthusiasm for AirPods, with 98 percent customer satisfaction based on a Creative Strategies survey. We have increased production capacity for AirPods, and are working very hard to get them to customers as quickly as we can, but we are still not able to meet the strong level of demand.In late December, a few weeks after AirPods launched, Cook said the wireless earphones had been "a runaway success," contributing to a "great holiday" season. Cook cheerfully noted that Apple is making them as fast as it can. AirPods are Apple's first pair of truly wireless earphones. They instantly turn on and connect to your iPhone, Apple Watch, iPad, or Mac when taken out of their charging case, thanks to Apple's custom W1 chip. Likewise, audio automatically plays as soon as you put them in your ears and pauses when you take them out. AirPods are controlled mainly by Siri. Doubling tapping an earpiece invokes Siri, and voice commands can be used to adjust the volume, change the song, make a call, and so forth. AirPods deliver up to five hours of