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AirPods 3: Everything We Know So Far

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Apple is working on a third-generation version of the AirPods, and for this updated version rumored to be launching in 2021, we could see some design changes for the first time since the AirPods came out in 2016. This guide covers everything that we know about the upcoming AirPods 3.


Design Updates

The third-generation AirPods may be updated with a design that's similar to the AirPods Pro, featuring a shorter stem and replaceable silicone ear tips that are able to better fit a wider range of ears.

The current AirPods​

Though the AirPods 3 might look like the AirPods Pro, they're not expected to get Pro-level features like Active Noise Cancellation and will instead be identical in overall function to the current AirPods.


A leaked image that's said to be the AirPods 3 surfaced in November 2020, featuring a design that is similar to the AirPods Pro, which is in line with rumors. The AirPods 3 have a more Pro-like rounded shape and are smaller in size.


Leaked images that surfaced in February 2021 are also said to depict the third-generation AirPods and case.


The AirPods in the image feature a shorter stem and will accommodate silicone ear tips similar to the AirPods Pro, while the case is wider to accommodate the new design.


New Internal Hardware

Apple is rumored to be working on a new wireless chip that could be included in the third-generation AirPods, and there could potentially be some improvements in battery life. A new wireless chip could bring extended range, but the AirPods 3 are expected to function like the current version with fast device switching and quick pairing with Apple devices, among other benefits.

In more technical news, the AirPods 3 will feature a more compact integrated system-in-package (SiP) that's similar to the SiP used in the AirPods Pro. This will allow more of the audio features to be integrated into a smaller casing design like the AirPods Pro.

Other Features

52audio, a site that shares rumors about headphones and earbuds, believes the AirPods 3 will feature the same pressure-relieving system that's used in the AirPods Pro. The system is meant to equalize pressure within the ear to mitigate discomfort from using the AirPods for a long period of time.

The AirPods 3 may also have the same touch controls as the AirPods Pro rather than the single and double-tap gestures available on current AirPods models.

Cost

Since the AirPods 3 aren't getting Active Noise Cancellation, it's likely the pricing will remain as is, with Apple charging $199 for the AirPods with Wireless Charging Case. It's not known if there will be a cheaper version available with a standard charging case that charges over Lightning as Apple could opt to discontinue this option.

Release Date

AirPods 3 are rumored to be coming in the first half of 2021, and if there is a March event as there has been in past years, the AirPods could make a debut in March.

Read More

For more on the current-generation AirPods and what we expect to see when the AirPods 3 launch, we have a full AirPods roundup with all of the details you might want to know.

Article Link: AirPods 3: Everything We Know So Far
 
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Serban55

macrumors 6502a
Oct 18, 2020
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We dont care....because we know that what Apple will do with Airpods 3, samsung will follow like a copy cat BOSS
 
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nutmac

macrumors 601
Mar 30, 2004
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Though the AirPods 3 might look like the AirPods Pro, they're not expected to get Pro-level features like Active Noise Cancellation and will instead be identical in overall function to the current AirPods.
I hope AirPods 3 will inherit 3 AirPods Pro features:
  1. Optimize Battery Charging
  2. Spatial Audio
  3. Tap the charging case to activate the charging indicator light
And for hardware:
  • Magnets compatible with MagSafe chargers
  • More color choices
  • No in-ear tips (those that prefer in-ear tips can get AirPods Pro)
  • U1 for more precise Find My triangulation
 
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CHLFC

macrumors newbie
Apr 29, 2020
11
24
London
Always on hands free "hey Siri" in Airpods 2 has been a real boon to me for accessibility reasons. I would like to see Apple extend the hands-free, hey Siri feature by enabling Siri to hang up a phone call hands-free with a "hey Siri hang up" or "hey Siri end call" command. This will be especially useful for accessibility and people with motor disabilities who cannot handle a iPhone and Apple Watch and touch the screen.
 
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jz0309

macrumors 65816
Sep 25, 2018
1,425
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Temecula, CA
The one thing that Apple must fix, for me to even consider a new pair of AirPods, is fit. My AirPods fall out all the time, even when I'm sitting in my chair during a phone call, they get very loose and sometimes fall out.
And they will fall out 100% of the time when I walk ...
I love the concept, they are just not made for me, eh, my ears...
 
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mikedop

macrumors 601
Dec 30, 2019
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Los Angeles, CA
So have we heard anything about AirPods Pro 2? I had some of those Chinese New Year AirPods shipped to me but I still don’t know if I want to use them if there will be new pros in just a few months. I’ll just keep using my Gen 1s if the changes are worth jumping.
 
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Bazooka-joe

macrumors 601
Mar 12, 2012
4,225
2,432
Swindon, England
So have we heard anything about AirPods Pro 2? I had some of those Chinese New Year AirPods shipped to me but I still don’t know if I want to use them if there will be new pros in just a few months. I’ll just keep using my Gen 1s if the changes are worth jumping.
Just rumours that they are due to be released in April with a revised case but no one knows what the actual pods look like yet.
 
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techfreak23

macrumors 6502
Sep 8, 2013
355
410
It would be nice if they introduced UWB with a newer wireless chip so that they could be precisely tracked in the Find My app.
 
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ouimetnick

macrumors 68030
Aug 28, 2008
2,957
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Beverly, Massachusetts
Why would they need to have a March event to announce these? Remember the 2nd gen AirPods, AirPods Pro, AirPods Max, and updated 2020 iPad Pro were all announced with a press release.
 
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one more

macrumors 68000
Aug 6, 2015
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I really like my AP2 and hope that AP3 will look similar to the last of the leaked images in this article, without any replaceable silicone tips. I have given APP a good try and they did not work well for my ears, so hopefully we will still have a model with an open design, not involving sticking something deep into the ear canals.
 
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soanis

macrumors regular
Apr 15, 2013
139
146
Europe
I'm expecting a round magsafe charging case for charging from the iphone 12 as well...
 
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