Trending March 2024 # What To Expect From The Rumored Airpods 3 And Airpods Pro 2 Updates # Suggested April 2024 # Top 6 Popular

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Following the introduction of AirPods Max in December, Apple reportedly has updates on the way for the rest of its AirPods lineup in 2023. This year, we expect Apple to introduce a new version of its incredibly popular AirPods and AirPods Pro, bringing major changes to both of them. Here’s everything we know so far.

Update February 22, 2023:

AirPods 3

The second-generation AirPods were initially released in March 2023, bringing “Hey Siri” support and Qi wireless charging. The overall design and form factor of AirPods has stayed the same since their original release in December 2024, so they are overdue for some sort of visual redesign.

If AirPods and AirPods Pro feature a similar design, what differentiates them and helps Apple justify the higher-price of AirPods Pro? According to Bloomberg, the AirPods would lack higher-end AirPods Pro features like noise cancellation and transparency mode.

Recently-leaked images from 52audio also claim to offer our first real-world look at the redesigned AirPods 3. Here we can see the smaller stem, in-ear design, and redesigned battery case.

As far as a release, both Kuo and Bloomberg expect Apple to release AirPods 3 sometime in 2023. Pricing information is unclear, but at least one report has suggested that AirPods 3 will cost roughly 20% less than AirPods Pro, which indicates a $199 price point.

Apple currently sells AirPods with wired charging case for $159 and AirPods with wireless charging case for $199.

AirPods Pro 2

Meanwhile, Apple is also reportedly planning a new version of AirPods Pro in 2023, again with a completely new design. This time, Apple is reportedly planning to make AirPods Pro look quite a bit like some of the competitors on the market from Amazon and Samsung.

Bloomberg has reported that the second-gen AirPods Pro will feature a “more compact” design that removes the stem that current sticks out from the bottom of the AirPods Pro. “A design in testing has a more rounded shape that fills more of a user’s a ear,” the report explained, likening the design to offerings from Samsung and Amazon.

For those unfamiliar, the Amazon Echo buds feature a stem-less design that is completely round and rests inside the user’s ear.

Amazon Echo Buds

These changes, however, are not guaranteed. Apple is said to have faced challenges removing the AirPods Pro stem while also still including features like transparency mode, the H1 chip, and noise cancellations. As such, Apple might settle on a less ambitious redesign of the AirPods Pro.

Another change to expect with AirPods Pro in 2023 is a redesigned charging case. The redesigned AirPods Pro charging case will reportedly remain 21mm thick, while it will be 46mm tall and 54mm wide. For comparison’s sake, the current AirPods Pro charging case measures in at 45.2mm tall and 60.6mm wide.

One possibility here is that Apple is adjusting the design of the AirPods Pro charging case to include support for MagSafe. Currently, AirPods Pro can be charged on the MagSafe puck, but the charging case does not magnetically attach to it. Apple would also have to redesign the charging case if it plans to change the form factor of the earbuds themselves.

AirPods Pro 2 are expected to be priced at the same $249 price point as the current AirPods Pro, and reports have suggested a release could come as soon as April.

9to5Mac’s Take

Apple’s decision to redesign the form factor of AirPods is likely to be controversial. There are many people who actively prefer the AirPods design over the in-ear fit of AirPods Pro. In fact, a poll of 9to5Mac readers last month indicated that 42% of readers prefer the AirPods design compared to 53% who prefer the AirPods Pro.

Apple’s decision to include different ear tip sizes in the box with AirPods will likely make them appeal to a broader set of users who otherwise wouldn’t like the “universal” design.

On the other hand, the redesigned AirPods Pro certainly sound intriguing, but again, design changes to headphones and earbuds are always bound to be controversial. Removing the stem and going for a rounded design is a major design change for AirPods Pro.

What’s interesting is that we haven’t yet heard any details about new features for AirPods or AirPods Pro. All of the reports so far have been based on supply chain sources, which often only have insight into the physical design of products, not potential new software features.

What do you think of the AirPods 3 and AirPods Pro 2 rumors? Are you looking forward to the rumored design changes or do you prefer the current design?

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Airpods 3 Vs Airpods 2: Should You Upgrade?

At its hardware event earlier this week, Apple launched the long-rumored AirPods 3 alongside the M1 Pro and M1 Max MacBook Pro. Unsurprisingly, the latest iteration of AirPods falls in line with the leaks and rumors leading up to the event. With a redesign and improved specs, the AirPods 3 seem to be a worthy successor to the AirPods 2 that has long been topping the chart in the TWS earbuds segment. So if you are planning to buy the new AirPods 3 and want to learn how it fares against its predecessor, we have made the job easier for you. In this article, we will compare the AirPods 3 vs AirPods 2 in terms of design, sound quality, wireless charging support, and other categories.

AirPods 3 vs AirPods 2: Detailed Comparison (2024)

To start the showdown on the right note, let’s first take a close look at the specs sheet for both the AirPods 3 and AirPods 2! Once that’s out of the way, we will look at more details to figure out what separates the new AirPods 3 from the previous generations. In order to derive a fair conclusion, we have compared the two AirPods models across 8 different categories. Hence, you can easily decide which one is more geared towards your taste and budget after reading this comparison.

AirPods 3 vs AirPods 2: Specs Comparison

Take a look at how the third-gen AirPods compares to its predecessor on paper in the specification table attached here:

 AirPods 2AirPods 3

Depth: 19.21 mm (0.76 inches)

Weight (earbuds)4 grams (0.14 ounces)4.28 grams (0.15 ounces)

Depth: 21.38 mm (0.84 inches)

Weight (charging case)38.2 grams (1.35 ounces)37.91 grams (1.34 ounces)

ErgonomicsLacks a secure in-ear design, longer stems Better in-ear design, shorter stems

Custom high dynamic range amplifier

Force sensor

ChipH1 chipH1 chip

Sweat and Water ResistanceN/ASweat and water resistant (IPX4)

ConnectivityBluetooth 5.0Bluetooth 5.0

Battery life (earbuds)Up to 5 hoursUp to 6 hours (up to 5 hours with spatial audio enabled)

Battery life (with charging case)Up to 24 hoursUp to 30 hours

ChargingWorks with Lightning connectorWorks with MagSafe charger, Qi-certified chargers, or Apple’s Lightning connector

Wireless chargingrequires dedicated caseYes, out-of-the-box

Design and Ergonomics

On the outside, the AirPods 3 and AirPods 2 look completely different. AirPods 3 has a striking similarity with the more expensive AirPods Pro and features a modern-looking in-ear contoured design with a shorter stem. Even though the AirPods 3 lack silicone tips, you will have a comfortable experience with these as compared to its predecessor. The enhanced comfort coupled with improved ergonomics should make the new AirPods a more trusted companion for an intense drill in the gym or a long run in the park.

Despite this huge criticism, the classic AirPods have acquired a cult status. With this offbeat design element, AirPods have stirred a true-wireless earphones culture. That’s the reason why we have a ton of AirPods clones floating in the market. For better or worse, each one of them is desperate to take a piece of the pie out of Apple AirPods’ market share.

So if you have set your sight on better-looking AirPods with a much-improved ergonomic profile, the chances of you picking up the 3rd-gen AirPods are pretty high. Yeah, it’s a no-brainer! Unless, of course, you wish to go for a vintage design at a cheaper price.

AirPods 3 vs AirPods 2: Sound Quality

Without undermining the popularity of the second-gen AirPods, the sound quality is not the reason why people love them. With clear and distortion-free sound, they have always been good – something that has managed to cut an average consumer. But, it was the simple design, ease-of-use, and the fear-of-missing-out that gravitated users towards the AirPods.

For those unfamiliar, Spatial audio is designed to provide a three-dimensional theatre-like audio experience. And with the dynamic head tracking, the earphones will make your music listening, video streaming, and even FaceTime calls more engrossing.

So yeah, on the sound quality front, AirPods 3 brings modest upgrades, enough to pack a solid punch and beat its predecessor.

Skin-Detect and Force Sensors

AirPods 3 features two new sensors, namely Skin-detect and Force sensors, on the stem of the earbuds. With the skin-detect sensor, the new AirPods can distinguish between your ear and other surfaces. Therefore, the AirPods play audio only when you are wearing them. The earphones will automatically pause when they are in your pocket or placed on a table.

AirPods 3 vs AirPods 2: Battery & Charging

Moving to the battery life, AirPods 3 has a clear edge over AirPods 2. While the former delivers up to 6 hours of listening time (up to 5 hours with Spatial audio enabled) and 4 hours of talk time, the latter offers up to 5 hours of listening time and 3 hours of talk time. Well, that translates to the extra one hour of juice for music streaming and talk time with the new AirPods 3.

However, it’s the MagSafe charging case of the AirPods 3 that proves to be a major differentiator. With the MagSafe charging case, you get up to 30 hours of total battery life (as opposed to 24 hours on the AirPods 2) and up to 20 hours of talk time (compared to 18 hours on the AirPods 2). That additional 6 hours of juice in the tank can come in super handy during long travels.

If you have embraced modern charging technologies, AirPods 3 should easily fit into your lifestyle, thanks to the support for MagSafe and Qi-certified chargers. Besides, the new AirPods 3 charging case also works with a Lightning connector, so you can use the traditional wired charging method. On the contrary, AirPods 2 charging case works with a Lightning connector and Qi-certified wireless chargers. So yeah, you can charge both AirPods wirelessly, but only the latest one will allow you to magnetically stick MagSafe chargers to it.

Sweat and Water Resistance

Along with the dated design, my biggest gripe with AirPods 1 and 2 has been the lack of sweat and water resistance. As someone who enjoys listening to music during gym workouts, sweat resistance is a must for me. The other feature that I prefer to have in my earphones is water resistance to ensure they are protected against accidental splashes of water or untimely drizzle.

Again, if all you need is a pair of reasonably good TWS earphones for your listening pleasure, the lack of sweat and water-resistant rating shouldn’t be a concern for you. You could buy the previous-gen, more affordable AirPods 2.

AirPods 3 vs AirPods 2: H1 Chip

The AirPods 2 and AirPods 3 both include the H1 headphone chip – the same brain that powers the AirPods Pro. That means you will have a seamless one-tap setup and connectivity experience across Apple devices. So, on the chip front, the battle between the latest and previous AirPods is even-steven.

Image courtesy: Apple

AirPods 3 vs AirPods 2: Price and Compatibility

Talking about price, AirPods 3 will set you back by $179 – exactly $50 more than the AirPods 2 ($129).

As for compatibility, the latest iteration of AirPods is compatible with iPhone 6s and later (also supports first-gen iPhone SE), iPod 7, iPad 5 and later, iPad Pro (all models), iPad Air 2 and later, iPad mini 4 and later, as well as Apple Watch Series 1 and later.

Apple AirPods 2

Dated half in-ear design

H1 chip, quick pairing

up to 24 hours battery life

wireless charging support

$129

Buy on Amazon

Apple AirPods 3

New ergonomic design

Spatial audio, Adaptive EQ

up to 30 hours battery life

MagSafe charging support

$179

Buy on Amazon

Is It Worth Spending $50 More to Get AirPods 3 Over AirPods 2?

Let me put things into perspective. If you are willing to ditch your existing AirPods 2 for a more capable pair of AirPods that look modern, feel comfier in your ears, and deliver a much-improved sound quality for under $200, AirPods 3 are a solid upgrade for you. In a nutshell, you should look at this middle child of the AirPods family as the trimmed-down version of the AirPods Pro. Except for top-tier features like active noise cancellation, transparency mode, and silicone tips, the third-gen AirPods has all the bases covered.

However, if you wish to become a part of the AirPods family for the first time and want a pair of good earbuds at an affordable price point, you can pick up the AirPods 2. Though they are priced at $129, you can get them at lower price points during the festive and holiday season. Don’t be surprised if they are up for sale for under $100.

Apple Airpods Pro Vs Huawei Freebuds 3: The Pro Or The Clone?

Which one has a better design?

Both earbuds have sensors on the inside and outside that allow them to auto-pause when one is removed from your ear.

On the other hand, the AirPods Pro features a brand new design that most people will still find familiar. Just like the good ‘ol wired earbuds of the past, the AirPods Pro come with three different silicone eartips – large, medium, and small. This change helps account for the variety in human ears, meaning they’ll comfortably fit a wider range of people. Not everyone will find a perfect fit, but Apple finally seemed to realize how important a good seal is for blocking outside sound from reaching your ears. There’s even a fit test that you can take in order to make sure that you’re using the correct eartips. To no one’s surprise, this test can only be done from an an iOS device.

The AirPods Pro and the Freebuds 3 both come with super portable charging cases that snap shut magnetically.

The cases for each pair of ‘buds are similar, though not identical. The AirPods Pro has a rectangular case while the Freebuds 3 have a circular case, but both are super easy to use and even easier to carry around in your pocket. The smooth white plastic is fairly similar on both, and the lid snaps shut almost exactly the same. There’s even a similar metal hinge on there back of both cases. Taking either pair of ‘buds one out of its respective case is almost the exact same experience. Magnets help both earbuds snap into place so you don’t have to worry about whether or not they’re charging.

Between the new design that prioritizes a better fit and the fact that the Freebuds 3 design is just a rip off of the original AirPods, this was a pretty easy one to judge. The AirPods Pro wins this category by a landslide.

Winner: AirPods Pro

Which true wireless earbuds have better active noise cancelling?

The primary feature Apple and HUAWEI tout for their earbuds is active noise cancelling, so let’s compare. The way to read the graphs below is easier than it looks. All you need to know is that the higher the peaks, the more noise is being cancelled. The closer the line is to 0dB (or if it’s flat), the less outside noise is being cancelled.

Which one sounds better?

When it comes down to it, these are both still earbuds and sound quality is still important. Obviously, neither is going to give you reference-level quality or over-ear amounts of bass due to the small drivers inside, but that doesn’t mean they sound bad. For earbuds, they both actually sound pretty good, though they take different approaches.

By looking at the  frequency response graphs for both pairs of earbuds, you can see that the AirPods Pro tends to have a slight bump in the low end (pink), which means that bass notes will sound a little louder when compared to other notes. Compare that to the Freebuds 3, which has a sharp dip in the low end that trails off in the deep lows, and it’s easier to understand why the Freebuds have such weak bass response. This is most likely due to the open-air fit of the Freebuds 3, while silicone eartips help seal up the AirPods Pro. By physically blocking your ear canal, rather than just sitting in it, the AirPods Pro are able to keep a lot of those low-end frequencies in your ear instead of leaking them out.

This concept also applies to outside sounds coming in. Where the AirPods Pro block outside sound by physically being in your ears, the Freebuds 3 let sound in easily, making it harder for you to hear the low-end notes of your favorite songs.

The earbuds fit snug in the ear canal now thanks to dedicated nozzles.

That said, the story changes a bit as we move up the frequency response graph. Where the HUAWEI Freebuds 3 appear to have a relatively flat line in the mids (pink to green), meaning there is no extra emphasis given to those notes, the AirPods Pro line is a little bumpy in that area. This means instruments like guitars and vocals, which reside in these frequencies, will sound a little clearer and more natural on the Freebuds 3 since there is little to no extra volume given to them.

The highs were more emphasized in the Freebuds 3 when compared to the AirPods Pro, so cymbals and certain aspects of human vocals should sound a little louder. That makes sense since the design of the Freebuds 3 allows outside noise in. The extra emphasis in the highs should help you hear those extra details.

The HUAWEI Freebuds 3 have a touch-sensitive stem that you can tap for playback controls or to activate the active noise cancelling.

So which one sounds better? As always, sound quality mainly comes down to preference, but in this situation, it also helps to think about the use case. The AirPods and Freebuds are probably going to be used as an everyday pair of ‘buds that you’ll carry everywhere. Because of that, you’ll likely get a better experience from the AirPods Pro since the ear tips allow for better isolation from the outside (even without the active noise cancelling.) The passive sound isolation will also come in handy if you tend to listen to bass-heavy music, as lower notes are the hardest to hear when there’s outside noise leaking in. Whether I’m listening to music or the AA podcast, I prefer the isolation in this situation just because it fits what I listen to a little better.

Winner: AirPods Pro

Let’s talk microphones

We have to talk about microphone quality. You can see on the graphs above how the HUAWEI Freebuds 3 have a slight emphasis in the low end of the vocal range. The result here is that lower voices will be picked up by the microphone easier than with the AirPods Pro. Still, this is one of those things that it’s easier for you to just hear for yourself. It’s a close call, but we’re giving this one to the HUAWEI Freebuds 3.

Winner: HUAWEI Freebuds 3

Which one has the better connection?

The earbuds come in two colors: black or this glossy white.

Similarly, HUAWEI has the Kirin A1 chip inside its ’buds with Bluetooth 5.1. This allows each earbud to receive audio data from the source device individually, resulting in shorter lag and fewer skips. Overall, the A1 chip makes for a good experience, one that even rivals the seamless experience of AirPods. The HUAWEI Freebuds 3 also have a copycat pop-up card to pair easily with your HUAWEI device. To pair with non-HUAWEI devices, you’ll have to hold down the Bluetooth pairing button on the side of the case for two seconds to enter pairing mode, and then connect via the phone’s Bluetooth menu.

As far as connection strength goes, I had no issues with skipping or stuttering for either of these. The respective radios inside held up nicely to everyday use. Both worked fine whether my phone was in my pocket or across the room, and the only time they disconnected was when I intentionally tested the range. I was able to push both to around 40 feet with a wall or two in between before the connection lapsed. As long as you’re not expecting to leave your house without your source device, then you shouldn’t have any issues.

Both Apple and HUAWEI offer the best experience to those who choose to use matching products. When it comes down to it, this one is too close to call.

Winner: Draw

Which one is easier to use?

An indentation on each stem indicates where you may press to control playback and switch between listening modes.

What about playback controls? Both have the same basic playback controls, and both lack true volume controls.

I found the squeezable stem of the AirPods Pro consistently worked perfectly. Comparatively, the tap-sensitive HUAWEI Freebuds 3 was a little hit or miss. I found myself double-tapping the Freebuds two or three times before they performed the correct function. True, these issues were few and far between, and for the most part the controls work fine, but I had almost no issues with the AirPods Pro and its squeezable stem.

Winner: AirPods Pro

Which one has the better battery life?

This section is probably the easiest to gauge. On background, we test all headphones at a constant output of 75dB, which is just below the levels that can result in noise-induced hearing loss. Once we’ve achieved a volume of 75dB, we play a mix of music on repeat until the battery dies. With this method, the AirPods Pro lasted 5 hours and 6 minutes when connected to an iPad Pro. Apple claims that the charging case will give you about 24 hours of extra listening time.

The HUAWEI Freebuds 3 charge via USB-C, which gives them the edge over the AirPods Pro when it comes to futureproofing.

The HUAWEI Freebuds 3 managed to get about 4 hours and 7 minutes running the same test connected to a P30 Pro. The charging case provides another 20 hours of listening time and only takes about an hour to charge up from zero to one hundred.

As far as the earbuds are concerned, the AirPods Pro outperforms the Freebuds 3 by an hour. That said, the Freebuds 3 charging case is hands down the one I’d prefer. While both cases are made of fairly similar (cheap-feeling) plastic, and both can charge wirelessly with any Qi-wireless charger, the Freebuds 3 charging case uses the (industry standard) USB-C. Apple opted for its own Lightning connector, which is the same cable current iPhones rely on. Thanks to the USB-C future-proofing, the Freebuds 3 case is more appealing.

Winner: Draw

Should we talk price? Yeah, let’s do it.

So should you buy the AirPods Pro or the HUAWEI Freebuds 3?

Apple AirPods Pro

Apple’s first noise-cancelling true wireless earbuds.

Apple’s high-end wireless earphones include features like active noise cancellation and transparency mode so you can still hear the world around you.

See price at Amazon

See price at Best Buy

See price at Crutchfield

HUAWEI FreeBuds 3

True wireless earbuds with active noise-cancelling from HUAWEI.

Huawei’s FreeBuds 3 true wireless earbuds might be AirPods clones, but they actually surpass Apple’s earbuds in a few areas.

See price at Amazon

Save

$53.00

See price at AliExpress

Save

$29.00

Airpods Pro 2: Apple’s Best ‘S’ Revision Yet

AirPods Pro 2 are the classic example of Apple taking an already great product and improving on it in meaningful ways. Only the most studious AirPods Pro observer could identify the new Pros over the originals.

Yet, the total user experience has been upgraded in a way that clearly warrants a new version. In prior years, this strategy would be marketed by appending the letter S to an iPhone product name. While that naming scheme has fallen out of fashion, the spirit of the letter applies to second-generation AirPods Pro in the best way possible.

AirPods Pro 2 features

Changes between AirPods Pro and AirPods Pro 2 ($249) are mostly on the inside for the earbuds:

Improved active noise-cancellation

Transparency mode that now includes adaptive option

Volume control with swipe gestures on earbud stems

Battery life increase from four hours to six hours

While still part of the AirPods Pro experience, the other new features belong to the charging case:

Improved battery life for the earbuds extends total listening time to 30 hours.

Case charging adds Apple Watch charger support.

Case now includes U1 chip like AirTags.

Built-in speaker for alert tones and pinging from Find My app

Built-in lanyard loop on the case (lanyard sold separately)

Any one of these changes could have warranted a hardware revision for AirPods. Apple added a wireless charging case option to first-gen AirPods. Then, Hey Siri support and not much more made second-generation AirPods. Apple similarly added MagSafe charging to AirPods Pro last year before actually releasing AirPods Pro 2. With that in mind, this ‘S’ revision to AirPods Pro is rather sizable.

Proven AirPods

The original AirPods defined the category of truly wireless earphones at the end of 2024. Wireless earphones at the time meant there was a cord between each earbud. It was truly a dark time, and AirPods made it better.

AirPods Pro somehow managed to pack active noise cancellation and a newer feature Apple called Transparency into an even smaller package. Frankly, this was like getting over-the-ear headphone features in something more compact than the standard AirPods.

Battery life

While the original AirPods promised up to five hours of battery life, AirPods Pro only dropped an hour off that with ANC and Transparency. The latter feature pipes in audio from your surroundings to compensate for environmental noise reduction from in-ear headphones.

The new AirPods Pro claim to have up to 2x improved active noise cancellation and includes an update to Transparency called Adaptive Transparency. They do this while adding two more hours of continued playback. Battery life doesn’t just catch up with the original AirPods this time. It exceeds it!

In a single test focused on battery life, I logged 5 hours 49 minutes of continuous on a single charge with AirPods Pro 2. Apple rates its battery life with 50% volume, which explains the slightly below six hours result.

While the original AirPods Pro quickly became my go-to headphones for running half marathons, battery life at higher volumes was always its own race. Up to two additional hours solves this at any volume.

Sound

Sonically, AirPods Pro 2 sound better than ever. Personally, my ability to fully appreciate this is as dull as ever.

Apple says its new H2 chip in AirPods Pro 2 “works in concert with a custom‑built driver and amplifier to deliver crisp, clear high notes and deep, rich bass in stunning definition — so every sound is more vivid than ever.”

I never found the original Pros lacking in sound quality given their compact size, and the new AirPods Pro certainly don’t sound any worse to my ears. The real H2 benefit for me is that previously mentioned battery life improvement.

Can you (not) hear me now?

Active Noise Cancellation claims to be up to 2x better on AirPods Pro 2 than first-gen AirPods Pro.

My first impression was that AirPods Pro 2 ANC is closer to AirPods Max ANC, but you still need big headphones to get closer to 100% noise cancellation, of course. A week later, I’m unsure if that was just the newness or if a number of factors account for the range between 1x and 2x performance.

I’ll echo what I said before. Noise cancellation was really good on first-gen AirPods Pro, and second-gen AirPods Pro either matches or improves it.

Transparency adapted

Adaptive Transparency is the new twist on how Transparency can perform on AirPods Pro. This is an optional toggle for Transparency mode that attempts to reduce loud noises while still piping in sounds around you.

The idea is that loud sirens, for example, aren’t amplified in your ears when you simply trying not to block out noise around you. I’ll have to report back on my experience with Adaptive Transparency. So far my experience has been that loud traffic sounds are still boosted with Adaptive Transparency than without AirPods at all, but that’s probably by design.

Volume control

Should you upgrade from AirPods Pro to AirPods Pro 2 for sound improvement? Maybe if you can appreciate the differences more than me. Two other differences are what made it worth it for me: battery life, as mentioned, and volume control.

Changing volume on AirPods has always required using a connected device (iPhone, Apple Watch, Mac, etc.) or voice control. Asking Siri to change volume is fine for HomePods, but it’s just not efficient for AirPods. I’ve mostly relied on pressing the buttons on my iPhone in my pocket or spinning the Digital Crown on the Apple Watch.

AirPods Pro 2 are the first to introduce on-board volume control, and it’s wonderful. I thought I would like this, and I do. It turns out if AirPods Pro volume control is easy, I’ll use it way more. In turn, that improves the overall experience.

Swiping the AirPod to change the volume now feels natural. This applies to sitting at my desk, walking around the grocery store, working out at the gym, or going for an outdoor run.

The swipe gesture has caught on enough with me that now I want to assign a different action to one of the AirPods. This already works with the squeeze gesture on the stem. You can assign sound mode to one AirPods and activating Siri to another.

Either way, people wanted a swipe gesture, and Apple delivered with AirPods Pro 2. And, it’s actually great.

I’ll also note that swipe gestures for volume almost brings AirPods Pro 2 up to audio control parity with wired EarPods. From Apple’s support document on EarPods:

Control audio with your EarPods

Pause: Press the center button. Press again to resume playback.

Skip forward: Press the center button twice quickly.

Skip backward: Press the center button three times quickly.

Fast-forward: Press the center button twice quickly and hold.

The only thing missing is the fast-forward control, and opening the swipe gesture to a second control for jumping ahead and back on the other AirPod exceeds that.

(EarPods can also “switch to an incoming or on-hold call, and put the current call on hold” by pressing the center button, then pressing again to switch back to the first call. For AirPods, you should probably just pull out the iPhone for this task. Siri can hang up on people in iOS 16, however!)

More capable case

I wonder what percentage of AirPods sales are buying to replace a lost pair? I’ve certainly been in this category more than once. The AirPods Pro 2 charging case is fully committed to easing that concern for customers. From the U1 chip to the new lanyard loop, there are more ways than ever to prevent losing your AirPods.

Everything is an AirTag

The U1 chip basically makes the AirPods Pro 2 case an AirTag sans year-long battery life. If your AirPods case is left behind, Apple’s Find My network will use nearby iPhones to show their location on a map. If the AirPods are in the case, you’ve found those too. This is a big deal if you’ve ever left your AirPods behind in a ride sharing car or coffee shop.

Everything is a speaker

And, for times when you know your AirPods charging case is nearby but not exactly where, you can now ping the case just like the iPhone can an Apple Watch. This has already been useful for me just around the house.

The built-in speaker also provides tones when charging or alerting you to low battery. The real purpose of the speaker is finding lost AirPods, but the tones add delight and whimsy to the experience.

Everything needs a lanyard

The last “don’t lose your AirPods” feature is the built-in lanyard loop. Lanyard sold separately. I dropped the whopping $13 on Incase’s lanyard marketed for AirPods and I like it, but any lanyard will do.

This is the one change to AirPods Pro 2 that I think could be considered a compromise. If you don’t use it, the silver loop is ugly compared to every AirPods case before it. On the other hand, building it in allows customers a way to add a carrying attachment without putting a case on a case.

Everything is a charger

Finally, the last two AirPods Pro 2 case features relate to charging. Apple touts up to 30 hours of listening time with the charging case. With six hours of continuous playback, that’s reached five AirPods recharges before needing external power. Math checks out. I did test how long it takes to recharge a pair of AirPods Pro 2 with the charging case. The result? About an hour.

Then there’s support for Apple Watch chargers. I didn’t ask for this, but thanks to whoever made it happen.

I would prefer Apple Watch to charge with MagSafe, but that’s not offered yet. Instead, Apple gave more purpose to the Apple Watch charging puck with AirPods Pro 2 case charging support.

This is especially useful if you have a MagSafe + Apple Watch charger. Prior to AirPods Pro 2, MagSafe Duo and similar chargers could power up one Apple Watch and one other thing that supported wireless charging (including AirPods). Now the same travel charger can power up your iPhone on the MagSafe side and your AirPods Pro 2 on the watch charging puck side.

Aside from that and previously mentioned feature requests, there’s only one thing that annoys me about AirPods Pro 2. The charging case uses the Lightning port like the iPhone, but the tides are turning toward iPhones dropping Lightning in favor of USB-C next year.

I can’t remember the last time I charged my AirPods case with a wire, so it’s not a big deal for me. It might mean we’ll see a charging case revision before AirPods Pro 3, however, just like when the original AirPods added a wireless charging case and AirPods Pro added a MagSafe charging case.

Put simply, if the original AirPods Pro were within earshot of perfect, this ‘S’ style revision gets us oh so much closer. The last major missing feature is … colors that aren’t white. Like black. Apple, make black AirPods.

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Tips To Fix Precision Finding Not Working With Airpods Pro 2

When you are dealing with a pricey pair of earphones like the brand-new AirPods Pro, it’s always better to have an extra layer of safeguard against loss. After all, you never know what will happen tomorrow and you might have to run from pillar to post to get them back. To help you recover your lost AirPods, Apple has introduced the “Precision Finding” feature.

Having given a try to this well thought out feature, I can vouch for its effectiveness. Unfortunately, that’s not the case with many users who have complained that Precision Finding is not working with AirPods Pro 2. If you are one of them, try out these workable tips to resolve the issue.

Fix Precision Finding Not Working with AirPods Pro 2

When you are faced with a persistent issue like this one, it’s better to dig in and find the hurdles that could be blocking the path. Hence, let’s get through it first up!

Why is Precision Finding not Working with AirPods Pro?

Without overlooking the software glitch, you should first check off the device compatibility and availability. Just like most notable features that have graced the iOS 16, Precision Finding has also been locked to the latest iPhone models. On top of all, you should make sure the feature is available in your country or region. 

As for the culprits that could be coming in the way, you can blame the poor Bluetooth connection and the bug that could be hindering Precision Finding from functioning properly. 

Make Sure Your iPhone is Compatible 

To begin with, be sure you have a compatible iPhone. In recent times, Apple has made most notable features like the Continuity Camera Webcam, background removal tool, Personalised Spatial Audio, and Live Text in Video exclusive to the latest iPhone models. With that said, have a look at the following list of devices that are compatible with this feature:  

iPhone 11 

iPhone 11 Pro

iPhone 11 Pro Max 

iPhone 12

iPhone 12 mini 

iPhone 12 Pro

iPhone 12 Pro Max

iPhone 13

iPhone 13 mini

iPhone 13 Pro

iPhone 13 Pro Max

iPhone SE 2

iPhone SE 3

iPhone 14

iPhone 14 Plus

iPhone 14 Pro

iPhone 14 Pro Max

Ensure That U1 Chip is Available to Use in Your Country or Region 

U1 chip aka ultra wideband chip plays a vital role in making Precision Finding feature work with the needed accuracy. Unfortunately, it has been banned in some countries due to privacy concerns. 

For those uninitiated, the U1 chip enables modern iPhones to precisely locate and communicate with other devices equipped with the ultra wideband. Moreover, it also provides enhanced spatial awareness.

What stands Ultra-wideband, an exceptionally efficient radio technology, apart is the ability to use a very low energy level for short-range.

Turn Off/On Bluetooth on Your iPhone

Since Bluetooth plays a vital role in helping Precision Finding work reliably, try turning it off/on to fix any random glitch that could have cropped up. 

Now, tap on Find. 

If the “Nearby” appears on your iPhone’s screen, the Precision Finding functionality is available. 

Next, start moving around to locate your lost AirPods. Be sure to follow the onscreen instructions carefully 

Check out the arrow that will point you in the direction of the AirPods. 

Additionally, you should see the approximate distance giving a clue about how far away your earphones are. 

Keep in mind that if your AirPods are placed on a different floor, a quick note may appear on the screen. As you approach your lost AirPods, you will feel the haptic feedback from your phone along with the audio cue.

What’s more, the graphic of the AirPods on ‌‌the iPhone‌‌ will also neatly shift as you approach the earphones. After you have successfully located the AirPods, Precision Finding will exit. And that’s about it!

Reboot Your iPhone

While it may sound to be quite simple, a simple reboot has done wonders in fixing many frustrating issues. Thus, it is worth trying out this nifty solution as well.

On your iPhone with Face ID: Hold down either the volume up or down button and the side button at once until the Power Off slider appears on the screen. After that, drag the Power Off slider to turn off your iPhone. Next, press the side button to restart the iPhone.

On iPhone with Touch ID Button: Press the side button to bring up the Power Off slider. Then, you need to drag the side to shut down the device. After that, press the side button to reboot the iPhone. 

Make Sure the U1 Chip is Enabled on Your iPhone

Not many folks know that there is a hidden setting for the U1 chip. While customizing the setting of your iPhone, you may have accidentally disabled it. So, ensure that the U1 chip is active on your iPhone. 

Now, scroll down to the bottom and tap on System System. On this screen, you should see a long list of system services. Find the Networking & Wireless option and ensure that it is turned on. 

Reset Network Settings 

If your iPhone is faced with network-related issues, Precision Finding won’t be able to work properly. One of the best ways to resolve network-related problems is to reset the network setting. Knowing how effective it has always been, you should give it a try without fail. 

Now, input your device passcode. If prompted, enter the Screen Time passcode as well. Then, hit Reset Network Settings to confirm the action. 

Reset Your AirPods Pro 

Probably the easiest way to fix all-functioning AirPods is to reset them. The reason why I can vouch for this radical solution is that it has rescued me on several occasions. So, I’m not going to miss out on this one.

To get going, put the AirPods in their charging case and close the lid. After waiting for about 30 seconds, open the lid of the charging case. 

Make sure the AirPods are connected and then put the earphones in your ears. Open the Settings app on your iPhone and tap on the AirPods tab under the Apple ID banner.

Tap on Forget This Device and confirm the action. 

Now, put the AirPods in the charging case. 

Ensure that the lid of the charging case is open. Hold down the setup button on the back of the case for about 15 seconds. Be sure to press the setup button until the status light on the front of the case starts flashing. 

It’s time to reconnect your AirPods with your iPhone. Make sure the AirPods are placed in the charging case and the lid is open. 

Place the AirPods close to the iPhone and then go through the instructions to complete the setup process.

Reset All Settings

Yet to get the better of the issue? No worries! Now, we will factory reset the iPhone and then reconnect the device to the AirPods. 

Now, reconnect to the AirPods and then check if Precision Finding has started to work properly. 

If the Precision Finding feature still seems to be broken, a software bug could be behind the issue. But fret not, this is where software update has a role to play.

If you are wondering how to update the connected AirPods, let me tell you that the earphones are updated automatically while they are charging and in the Bluetooth range.

Fixed Precision Finding Not Working With AirPods Pro

Read more: How to Fix Continuity Camera Webcam Not Working in iOS 16 and macOS 13 Ventura

Apple Airpods 3 Offer A Surprising Number Of Pro Features

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Apple announced that the next generation of AirPods is coming next week, just one of several products revealed as part of its Oct. 18 “Unleashed” event. The AirPods 3, or “third-generation AirPods,” as Apple described them, adds many of the features from the AirPods Pro into the standard AirPods design, including Dolby Atmos spatial audio and a few other upgrades. They’re also a little pricier, narrowing the gap between standard AirPods and the AirPods Pro even further.

How the AirPods 3 are more like the AirPods Pro

The AirPods 3 are getting some substantial audio quality upgrades, most of which come from hand-me-down features introduced in the AirPods Pro. First and foremost, they’ll support Dolby Atmos spatial audio with head tracking, which creates simulated surround sound that can replicate sounds coming from above, below, and all around you. The added gyroscope, a new hardware component added to AirPods 3, follows the movement of your head and ensures that the positions of those virtual speakers move when you turn your head. (That way the speaker on your right always sounds like it’s coming from the right, etc.) AirPods 2 feature spatial audio through Apple Music, but the AirPods 3 expands that functionality to a wider range of content, including Netflix and group FaceTime calls, similar to what you get from the AirPods Pro and AirPods Max.

Also from the AirPods Pro, computational “Adaptive EQ” automatically adjusts the AirPods 3’s audio settings to replicate the sound you’re playing as accurately as possible for your specific ear physiology.

Bigger, better battery life for the ‘Pods and the case

Some of the best improvements to the AirPods 3 are actually related to the case. First and foremost, the AirPods 3 will get up to six hours of battery life on a single charge, up from 5 in its predecessor. They can also get a quick charging burst: A five-minute charge can give you an hour of battery life. 

The AirPods 3 case supports MagSafe. Apple

The charging case, at full battery, can recharge the AirPods 3 up to four times before needing to be plugged in, bringing total battery life for the full package up to a respectable 30 hours. The new case also supports MagSafe now, so the charging cable will stick to the case. For a lighter device that can be accidentally knocked around, this will probably be more helpful than you’d expect at a glance.

Redesigned ‘buds and other shiny, new features

The AirPods 3 feature a new “contour” design, created to make the standard, tipless earbud more comfortable for all ears. As expected, the ‘buds have shorter stalks, so they look a little less dangly. At the same time, Apple somehow managed to also add the AirPods Pro’s onboard controls. There’s a force sensor on the stalk, allowing you to pause, play, skip songs, and answer-end calls with a press.

The ‘buds also have “an enhanced skin-detect sensor,” so the AirPods only play when they’re in someone’s ear. They’ll also automatically pause if you put the ‘buds on a table.

The AirPods 3 also feature the easier pairing process introduced with the AirPods Pro. Simply placing the 2023 AirPods near an Apple device automatically pairs them.

Lastly, the AirPods 3 are also rated IPX4 sweat and water-resistant, so you can worry a little less about running with them in the rain. 

So when can I get them?

Preorders for the Apple AirPods 3 are on sale now and will be in stores beginning Tuesday, Oct. 26. They cost $179, a small step up from the $129 AirPods 2, which are still available. Given the narrow difference in features between the AirPods 3 and AirPods Pro, you can probably expect that there will be an AirPods Pro redesign in the next year or so and that the new model will be more expensive than the current design. 

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