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Apple Discontinues urBeats3 After Releasing Beats Flex

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Apr 12, 2001
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Apple this morning quietly introduced new Beats Flex headphones, marking the launch of the brand's most affordable wire-free headphones to date.


Beats Flex are priced at just $50, and are identical in design to the BeatsX earphones. With lower-cost Bluetooth-based Beats headphones now available, Apple has discontinued the UrBeats headphones that it previously offered under Beats branding.

UrBeats3 were priced at $60 and were available in Lightning and 3.5mm versions, and with their discontinuation, the Beats brand is no longer offering affordable wired headphone options. The $130 wired Beats EP headphones are still available, though.

For those who prefer wired headphones, Apple still sells EarPods with Lightning and 3.5mm connector options for $19 each, but EarPods no longer come free with iPhones.

Article Link: Apple Discontinues urBeats3 After Releasing Beats Flex
 

B4U

macrumors 68030
Oct 11, 2012
2,793
2,748
Undisclosed location
10 years using Bluetooth headphones, and not a single one had any lag.

And just FYI, sound does lag in real life.
16 years using Bluetooth and a current member of Bluetooth SIG, every single one still have latency.
Please kindly share the ones that you found no lag so that I can stop buying new ones and end up with more disappointment. :)
 
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trellus

macrumors regular
Jan 12, 2007
155
165
Plano, TX
16 years using Bluetooth and a current member of Bluetooth SIG, every single one still have latency.
Please kindly share the ones that you found no lag so that I can stop buying new ones and end up with more disappointment. :)

I'm pretty sure it's a matter of the apps themselves purposely delaying the video to account for the delay of audio transmission over Bluetooth so there is no sync issue, since of course, lag is a real thing that's just a fact of life in Bluetooth audio transmission.

I've had plenty of Bluetooth headphones that work flawlessly with no perceptible audio/video sync issue with YouTube -- while others are out of sync.

I have my Sennheiser HD1 Wireless (aka the Sennheiser Momentum 2 Wireless) on right now and there is zero perceptible lag in YouTube -- just tested it right now with people talking and I see no sync issue between lips moving and the sounds reaching my earholes over Bluetooth in YouTube on iOS 13 on my iPhone XS. :)
 
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jamisonbaines

macrumors 6502
Dec 14, 2007
253
57
CA
I like having a set of wired headphones to fall back on but I had 3 sets of standard 3.5mm jack urBeats and 2 of them went bad on me so I could never bring myself to buy a lightning version. I also have BeatsX, which I like but they never get as loud or punchy as the wired urBeats did and the battery life is a disappointment..I get like 2 hours out of them.

So in a way I'm happy to see these new Flex, but I find it frustrating having batteries in literally everything. And now it's USB-C? Please just move the iPhone to USB-C so we can simplify. 30 pin lasted from 2003-2012 so maybe Lightning can go 2012-2021, I know it has it's advantages but with iPad Pro and MacBook on USB-C it's time to change.
 

Kyle4

macrumors 6502a
Aug 14, 2010
629
891
Canada
16 years using Bluetooth and a current member of Bluetooth SIG, every single one still have latency.
Please kindly share the ones that you found no lag so that I can stop buying new ones and end up with more disappointment. :)

I haven‘t had a single lag issue with voice since Bluetooth 4. My AirPods Pro work flawlessly with my AppleTV. Same with my cheap $30 Skullcandy headphones. The $20 Redmi Airdots I purchased? Definite lag though. If it’s there it must be milliseconds and imperceptible to me because I look for it.
 
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Bustycat

macrumors 6502
Jan 21, 2015
359
857
Kaohsiung, Taiwan
Since the price of EarPods was US$29 before the keynote, that’s a significant drop. Here the price dropped from NT$990 to NT$590, ...40%!
 
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amartinez1660

macrumors 6502a
Sep 22, 2014
571
496
I still love my Beats X for working out. I also own a pair of AirPods Pro, but the Beats X stay in my ears better during workouts.
My only issue with Beats headphones is that all the wireless sports marketed ones (Powerbeats 2, Powerbeats 3 and Beats X) sooner or later have either one side stops functioning or intermittently or it stops charging, as if they are really not sweat resistant at all, as soon as 6months of use down the line. A shame because I really like the sound.
At least the trustable Apple products warranty took care of it every time it happened but I would rather it just worked flawlessly forever.
Currently with a pair of AirPods Pro at the 6 months mark show absolutely no sign of any sort of wear on that type.
My personal experience that is.
 
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jcshas

macrumors 6502a
Oct 8, 2003
637
659
My only issue with Beats headphones is that all the wireless sports marketed ones (Powerbeats 2, Powerbeats 3 and Beats X) sooner or later have either one side stops functioning or intermittently or it stops charging, as if they are really not sweat resistant at all, as soon as 6months of use down the line. A shame because I really like the sound.
At least the trustable Apple products warranty took care of it every time it happened but I would rather it just worked flawlessly forever.
Currently with a pair of AirPods Pro at the 6 months mark show absolutely no sign of any sort of wear on that type.
My personal experience that is.

That‘s a bummer. I’ve had my BeatsX for about 2 years without any issues. The battery life is diminished but fortunately they’re still going strong.
 
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iSayuSay

macrumors 68040
Feb 6, 2011
3,349
470
That‘s a bummer. I’ve had my BeatsX for about 2 years without any issues. The battery life is diminished but fortunately they’re still going strong.

Same experience here. I’ve had my BeatsX for almost 3 years before I sold it because I get bored and want new features of H1 chip. Now I’m rocking the new corded Powerbeats for workouts.

Yep I sold it because it’s still work, in a proper condition and still hold 3-4hours of playback between charge after I use it almost daily, for 3 years!!

Can’t say the same for the wife’s original AirPods. Two years in and it’s practically useless. The case battery is still fine but the buds’ barely survive an hour before the low-battery note chiming in. Not to mention a few times that one bud is dead, won’t charge or connect for no reason.

I will keep buying corded wireless headphones until true wireless is more reliable and ready with proper battery life. Way too delicate and quirky as it is, especially for $200++
 

B4U

macrumors 68030
Oct 11, 2012
2,793
2,748
Undisclosed location
I'm pretty sure it's a matter of the apps themselves purposely delaying the video to account for the delay of audio transmission over Bluetooth so there is no sync issue, since of course, lag is a real thing that's just a fact of life in Bluetooth audio transmission.

I've had plenty of Bluetooth headphones that work flawlessly with no perceptible audio/video sync issue with YouTube -- while others are out of sync.

I have my Sennheiser HD1 Wireless (aka the Sennheiser Momentum 2 Wireless) on right now and there is zero perceptible lag in YouTube -- just tested it right now with people talking and I see no sync issue between lips moving and the sounds reaching my earholes over Bluetooth in YouTube on iOS 13 on my iPhone XS. :)
My guess is the lag is not as obvious when watching video vs gaming.
It gets very annoying when getting hit by the red shell about the same time I hear it coming. 😓
 

twocents

macrumors 6502
Mar 31, 2016
299
1,586
California, USA
Same experience here. I’ve had my BeatsX for almost 3 years before I sold it because I get bored and want new features of H1 chip. Now I’m rocking the new corded Powerbeats for workouts.

Yep I sold it because it’s still work, in a proper condition and still hold 3-4hours of playback between charge after I use it almost daily, for 3 years!!

Can’t say the same for the wife’s original AirPods. Two years in and it’s practically useless. The case battery is still fine but the buds’ barely survive an hour before the low-battery note chiming in. Not to mention a few times that one bud is dead, won’t charge or connect for no reason.

I will keep buying corded wireless headphones until true wireless is more reliable and ready with proper battery life. Way too delicate and quirky as it is, especially for $200++

How’s your experience with the Powerbeats? I got a free set of beats couple years back with Mac back to school promo. Nice, clear sound quality and recharge maybe once a week. Though had one ear cushion wear out and begin to tear off then replacement now has the head padding coming loose.
 

iSayuSay

macrumors 68040
Feb 6, 2011
3,349
470
How’s your experience with the Powerbeats? I got a free set of beats couple years back with Mac back to school promo. Nice, clear sound quality and recharge maybe once a week. Though had one ear cushion wear out and begin to tear off then replacement now has the head padding coming loose.

From my BeatsX, it’s a great upgrade. Battery life is insane for its size. I’ve gotten 7-9 days worth of workouts between charge (my Beats X only did 4-5 days when it was new, and 2-3 days when I sold it).

The cord is shorter and less annoying, sound quality is also improved. My only complaint is noise isolation is practically zero, you could hear all the ambient noise (which could be a great safety & awareness for running outdoors).

All in all, I’d take Powerbeats anyday over AirPods Pro especially for running and workouts. Better bass, reliable, free of wireless quirks, better battery life and longevity.
 

blingem

macrumors newbie
Apr 22, 2011
15
1
10 years using Bluetooth headphones, and not a single one had any lag.

And just FYI, sound does lag in real life.
It also could be an issue with the TV. My samsung TV lags, but nothing else ever has.
 

CyberBob859

macrumors 6502a
Jun 13, 2007
504
210
Well, so much for the "Apple killing Beats" narrative if they're introducing a new product (albeit at the low end.) However, by removing the EarPods and charger from the case, and coming up with MagSafe and Beats Flex, I think what they're really aiming to kill is the Lightning port altogether.
 

deevey

macrumors 6502
Dec 4, 2004
288
280
10 years using Bluetooth headphones, and not a single one had any lag.

And just FYI, sound does lag in real life.

You can compensate for that when the content does not need to be realtime e.g. Video Streaming

I haven‘t had a single lag issue with voice since Bluetooth 4. My AirPods Pro work flawlessly with my AppleTV. Same with my cheap $30 Skullcandy headphones. The $20 Redmi Airdots I purchased? Definite lag though. If it’s there it must be milliseconds and imperceptible to me because I look for it.

Bluetooth latency can be upward of 200ms which is unusable for something like a realtime multiplayer game e.g. COD or Audio (production) / DJ Applications where audio should respond instantly to your input.

Video Streaming like YouTube / Netflix delay the video to compensate for the latency but on games you just end up with horrible audio lag.


My guess is the lag is not as obvious when watching video vs gaming.
It gets very annoying when getting hit by the red shell about the same time I hear it coming. 😓

I feel ya bud ...wired is the best way for games (for now)
 
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Anuba

macrumors 68040
Feb 9, 2005
3,756
364
The only tolerable silicon-tipped in-ears from Apple/Beats are AirPods Pro and PowerBeats Pro, because they're isolated from anything other than your ears to conduct friction/contact noise from. Unfortunately you still have to endure the awfulness of walking around with suction cups jammed into your ear canals, but they're still heaven compared to BeatsX. The only model(s) worthy of the prefix "Air" are the original AirPods + AirPods 2. My AirPods 1 are nearly useless due to batteries lasting 45 minutes at best, but those are 45 blissful minutes thanks to the lightness, the transparency and the non-intrusive nature of these classics.

With the abomination that was BeatsX, you had to endure not merely the suction cups but the added torture of friction/contact against the cables being transfered directly into your ears. This from WIRELESS earbuds! One of the most important jobs for wireless earbuds to do of was to eliminate this noise horror. The single most annoying thing about old school cabled earbuds was that noise. All you heard was RUMBLERUMBLECRUNCHSCRAPETHUDRUMBLERUMBLESCRAPE like a perpetual landslide inside your head, with a faint trace of music buried underneath the noise. The only bearable wired earbuds are EarPods, as they are blessed with the heavenly absence of silicon tips.

Yet the blithering moron "engineers" who designed the BeatsX somehow managed to transfer this dealbreaker to wireless(!) by designing them so that they still have cables that rub against collars, neck skin etc, rendering them 10x noisier than the wired EarPods. And now they're releasing the same failed design again under a new name. Amazing. Can't Beats just die, please? I never tried anything from them that didn't suffer from at least one epic design flaw and/or build quality disaster.
 

Kyle4

macrumors 6502a
Aug 14, 2010
629
891
Canada
Bluetooth latency can be upward of 200ms which is unusable for something like a realtime multiplayer game e.g. COD or Audio (production) / DJ Applications where audio should respond instantly to your input.

Video Streaming like YouTube / Netflix delay the video to compensate for the latency but on games you just end up with horrible audio lag.

Thanks for elaborating/explaining that, I had no idea in regards to those uses and can understand why that’d be frustrating.
 

DeepIn2U

macrumors 604
May 30, 2002
7,779
2,731
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Same experience here. I’ve had my BeatsX for almost 3 years before I sold it because I get bored and want new features of H1 chip. Now I’m rocking the new corded Powerbeats for workouts.

Yep I sold it because it’s still work, in a proper condition and still hold 3-4hours of playback between charge after I use it almost daily, for 3 years!!

Can’t say the same for the wife’s original AirPods. Two years in and it’s practically useless. The case battery is still fine but the buds’ barely survive an hour before the low-battery note chiming in. Not to mention a few times that one bud is dead, won’t charge or connect for no reason.

I will keep buying corded wireless headphones until true wireless is more reliable and ready with proper battery life. Way too delicate and quirky as it is, especially for $200++

AirPods carry a 1 yr limited warranty. Why didn’t you get AppleCare+ on them? You’d essentially have brand new AirPods less than half the price than paying retail and brand new batteries. And potentially a spare case from the originals?
 

iSayuSay

macrumors 68040
Feb 6, 2011
3,349
470
AirPods carry a 1 yr limited warranty. Why didn’t you get AppleCare+ on them? You’d essentially have brand new AirPods less than half the price than paying retail and brand new batteries. And potentially a spare case from the originals?

AppleCare or not, AirPods has a very limited lifespan by design. Yet my old BeatsX with the same warranty (without AppleCare) survive 3 years of workout use, can still be sold afterwards, and reasonably well-working.

Took the wireless bait once, lesson learned. Wife dumped the AirPods and we both switched to Powerbeats. Hardly miss anything since we still enjoy the H1 chip benefits.
 

DeepIn2U

macrumors 604
May 30, 2002
7,779
2,731
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
AppleCare or not, AirPods has a very limited lifespan by design. Yet my old BeatsX with the same warranty (without AppleCare) survive 3 years of workout use, can still be sold afterwards, and reasonably well-working.

Took the wireless bait once, lesson learned. Wife dumped the AirPods and we both switched to Powerbeats. Hardly miss anything since we still enjoy the H1 chip benefits.

FYI BeatsX are wireless. True fact ;) their not the “true” wireless meaning no cable but you’re still using Bluetooth.
 

iSayuSay

macrumors 68040
Feb 6, 2011
3,349
470
FYI BeatsX are wireless. True fact ;) their not the “true” wireless meaning no cable but you’re still using Bluetooth.

LOL okay mate.. like I said.. corded wireless or neckband style wireless, or wired-wireless headphones. Whatever you want to call it. But the point is, I love BeatsX (and now my new Powerbeats) being more reliable, simple and live longer. Single Bluetooth module, single battery status, single piece design that is harder to lose for workouts. And most importantly I can actually turn them off.

With AirPods, you can't really turn it off so it continuously cycle the battery (hence the terrible lifespan). Even when sit in the case doing nothing, the buds keep sipping into the case's battery for some reason. No volume rocker also turned out to be a PITA for our use. There's also three effin' batteries status to maintain, THREE!

Look mate, I'm not trying to argue anything. You love AirPods or true wireless for what it is? Great, but it's not for me, nor my wife. I just hope Apple keep making new corded wireless in the future, because I will keep buying it.
 
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