Apple refreshed the AirPods earlier this year, but that was only a minor upgrade for the iconic wireless earphones. AirPods 2 got a case that can be recharged wirelessly and a brand new chip, but the device still looks exactly as the first-gen model — both of them are available in stores. But Apple is also expected to release a brand new AirPods version later this year, on in early 2020, which we’ve been referring to as AirPods 3. A new story from China claims the actual name of Apple’s next-gen AirPods is AirPods Pro. The redesigned earphones are supposed to be even more expensive than AirPods 2 and might launch as soon as late October.
Apple is widely expected to launch a few brand new devices later this month, including the 2019 iPad Pro versions, the Mac Pro, and the rumored 16-inch MacBook Pro. It’s unclear whether Apple will hold a new press event, however, as the company is yet to issue any press invites.
The AirPods Pro’s main new feature is supposed to be noise cancellation, the report notes, and the new pair of earphones might hit stores in time for the Christmas season. The Pro version would be even more costly than AirPods 2, the report said. AirPods Pro could cost as much as $260 in Taiwan — comparatively, the first- and second-gen AirPods are priced at $159 and $199 in the US.
A separate report from the same source claims the AirPods 3 will have a metal design that should improve heat dissipation.
Earlier reports indicated that Apple has been working on a brand new design for the AirPods, with iOS 13.2 beta code also hinting that an AirPods makeover is in the works. The AirPods Pro might feature rubber ear tips, which could help with noise cancellation. The image is contained in the Accessibility Settings folders, MacRumors explains, which might be an indication that the new earphones would double as hearing aids, or would work with the existing Live Listen feature.