If you just bought the all-new AirPods 2, you might be disappointed to hear that that might’ve been a waste, as the Apple AirPods 3 could very well launch this year. A new report is saying that the Apple AirPods 3 will be launching by the end of this year, and with a handful of new features in tow.
Just a couple of months ago, Apple announced a slight upgrade to the original AirPods. This is being dubbed as the AirPods 2, though they’re still called the Apple AirPods. This new upgrade come with some things like wireless charging abilities added to the charging case — i.e. now, you can simply set them on a wireless charging pad to charge the AirPods up.
The AirPod earpieces themselves actually came with an extra hour of battery life as well, whereas the juice in the case remained the same, sitting at 24 hours of extra charge when full.
That said, since it was a pretty minor upgrade, seeing a major one come along this year wouldn’t be too far-fetched, though it may frustrate some customers. Read along, and we’ll show you some of the things that you can expect in the all-new Apple AirPods 3 headphones.
AirPods 3 Rumors
So, there’s one problem — and that’s going to be the obvious frustration that some Apple customers will experience because they paid for the Apple AirPods 2, only for the Apple AirPods 3 to launch a few months later. However, rumor has it that the new AirPods 3 aren’t going to be replacing the Apple AirPods 2, but will be offered alongside them as a premium audio experience.
That said, according to supply chain sources that spoke to Digitimes, Apple is looking to release its new set of Apple AirPods before the Christmas shopping season, giving shoppers plenty of time to purchase for gifts under the Christmas tree this year.
These rumors would line up with things that we have heard in the past. We’ve heard quite a bit about Apple offering noise cancelling in its Apple AirPods for a long time now, but that never seems to have happened. And it seems quite unlikely that Apple would ever offer something like that in a pair of headphones that ranges between $140 and $200. That’s just premium technology that you don’t often see at that price level — just look at Bose’s QuietComfort 35’s, for example.
That said, we could very well see something like noise cancellation technology in Apple’s new AirPods 3. If Apple is planning on making them pricier than $200 — the max amount that the current AirPods cost — we could very well see noise cancellation in a pricier, more premium pair of AirPods.
Nose cancellation has been spoken about a lot, but there are a handful of other features that we could expect to see in the new Apple AirPods 3 as well.
There are a variety of rumors going around that are indicating that Apple could very well add biometric sensors to the next generation of AirPods. These aren’t just rumors that come from nowhere, but are actually based off of patents that Apple has recently filed for as well.
According to patents filed by the company, these will be “pressed up against a portion of the tragus,” so the AirPods can record heart rate and body temperature, as well as other health metrics.
The tragus — as is probably not commonly known — is the bit that sticks out of your ear, right above the ear lobe, and what Apple’s AirPods sit right behind. Naturally, since this is a rumor — and we haven’t heard any concrete details yet — we don’t know exactly what these biometric sensors are going to be intended for; however, it will likely be tied in with Apple’s Health app some how, likely streaming whatever data it collects to the Health app.
These should also be shipping with Bluetooth 5.0. That should offer you even better range with your Apple AirPods 3, but should vastly improve the battery life as well. You’ll be able to listen to music for longer without having to take buds out of your ear and place in the case for charging.
A new report that builds off of what DigiTimes has already said indicates that we’ll definitely see the Apple AirPods 3 by the end of this year.
On top of that, it appears that they’re going to come with a couple of extra features on-board. There some reports floating around that indicate noise-cancellation, which will likely be digital noise cancellation, instead of a true noise cancellation.
We’re also hearing that the AirPods 3 could come with the rumored water-resistance, as well as some unspecified design changes.
Overall, we’re probably looking at a significant design update this time around. Right now, the Apple AirPods essentially just sit in your ear — they don’t seal off any portion of it, nor do they have the equipment built-in to handle or neutralize exterior sounds.
That said, there would have to be a significant design update for that to even happen. And we don’t know how that’s all going to work in such a small package. Remember, noise cancellation can take a lot of extra battery, so Apple would need to find a way to keep the battery the way it currently is as well.
Obviously Apple itself isn’t lending any details, but if we’re going to look at historical launches, we could very well see an announcement at their yearly September Apple event.
AirPods 3 Sound quality
We should also mention that there are rumors going around that say the Apple AirPods 3 will feature much better sound quality in the earbuds as well. However, we don’t know how much of a difference the average person is going to hear versus the audiophile. It sounds like Apple is trying to offer something for the crowd that is very particular about audio — knowing all of the little differences and nuances between lows, highs, mids, treble, and bass.
So, overall, we’re definitely going to see some better sound quality here, but so far, it’s questionable on whether or not the layman or average person is going to be able to tell a big difference between the Apple AirPods 3 and the Apple AirPods 2. Since they’re going to be sold side by side, we’re not likely to believe that there will be, at least for the layperson.
AirPods 3 Design
The design of the Apple AirPods 3 will likely be different as well, especially since they will likely be being sold right alongside the Apple AirPods 2.
For one, the Apple AirPods have traditionally been sold in white, with no other color options available there. However, this time around, the Apple AirPods 3 will likely be able to ship in black, probably to help further tell the difference between the Apple AirPods 2 and AirPods 3.
We doubt we’ll see much of a design difference other than that. The AirPods themselves might be a little bigger, because as we mentioned earlier, they should come with some better sound quality in tow as well. You’ll likely get the same charging case and AirPod style, but in black.
We might end up seeing more than that — there are just no solid rumors around that right now. We imagine, however, that Apple would want to make sure it was differentiating the two models as much as possible. That said, we might even see some improvements to many of the complaints that surround the Apple AirPods and their level of comfort.
AirPods 3 release date
So, we saw the Apple AirPods 2 get announced in late March, and then see a launch in early to mid April. However, as we mentioned earlier, Apple is looking at launching the Apple AirPods 3 this year, and before the Christmas shopping season as well. While we don’t know any concrete details or rumors circulating around on an exact date, we do have an idea of when we could see one, at least an idea that would make sense.
It’s quite likely that Apple could announce the new version of the Apple AirPods when they announce the new set of iPhones this fall. Apple announced the original model of the AirPods when the iPhone 7 launched, though the AirPods didn’t officially launch until a few months later.
We could see something similar this time around, as we can’t imagine Apple holding its own media event to simply announce an accessory like the AirPods. So, we could be looking at an announcement somewhere in the September to October timeline.
As for an actual release, that one is hard to pinpoint, as Apple has set absolutely no pattern whatsoever for launching its phone accessories. We could see Apple do the same thing as they did in 2016, announcing them alongside the iPhone, and then launching them a few months later in December.
However, reports are saying that Apple would like to launch these before the holiday shopping season, which means we could very likely see an actual release date alongside Apple’s new set of iPhones.
And this wouldn’t be a bad thing either. The new iPhone is rumored to feature wireless charging support for accessories, meaning you could charge your Apple AirPods up on the go by simply setting them on the back of the iPhone — it doesn’t have a fancy name, but is often referred to as reverse wireless charging. That’s similar to what Samsung has already done in the Galaxy S10, allowing you to charge Qi-compatible phones and accessories by simply setting them on the back of another Galaxy S10.
There aren’t many concrete details on what the Apple AirPods 3 could be all about, but there are a lot of different reports, coming from the supply chain, that we will definitely see something before the Christmas season hits. That would enable customers to get their purchases in for gifts this holiday season, which would be great timing for Apple.
To sum up, we could see the Apple AirPods 3 ship in black, but could also see noise cancellation technology appear, as well as better battery life, upgraded Bluetooth, and overall better sound.
What would you like to see out of the Apple AirPods 3? Let us know in the comments section below.