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Leak says Apple will launch AirPods 3 and Apple Pencil 3 soon

Updated Apr 16th, 2021 7:37AM EDT
AirPods 3 Rumors
Image: Apple/Amazon

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Apple will unveil new products next Tuesday during the “Spring Loaded” press event the company announced a few days ago. The new iPad Pro is expected to be the main star of the virtual keynote, with Apple set to unveil an important display upgrade. The 12.9-inch will be Apple’s first computer with a mini-LED screen that’s supposed to offer improved performance over traditional iPad LCD screens. Apple is also expected to finally introduce the AirTags trackers during the event. The 2021 iMac refresh might also be a highlight of the show, considering that rumors say the new all-in-one will feature a massive design makeover that will include bigger display options and multiple colors. But a recent leak from China suggests that Apple might unveil two other products during the press conference, the AirPods 3 and Apple Pencil 3.

The new iPad Pros will feature a processor similar to the M1 powering the three Mac models and 5G support. Upgrading the Apple Pencil might make sense, considering that the second-generation stylus dropped in 2018. It’s unclear what sort of new features the new Apple Pencil will deliver, but a Weibo user claimed that the new stylus would be unveiled during the April 20th event.

The 12.9-inch iPad Pro will feature a new display technology. The new Pencil might deliver additional improvements to leverage mini-LED screen tech, but that’s just speculation.

More exciting is the AirPods 3 rumor. The same Weibo user posted an image online that shows the new AirPods generation inside the protective case. The AirPods 3 are widely expected to feature a brand new design. They’ll look just like the AirPods Pro models but won’t feature user-replaceable tips. That means they’re getting shorter stems than the previous two AirPods generations, as well as a wider case that’s not as tall as the previous ones.

AirPods 3
Photo showing purported AirPods 3. Image source: Weibo

The AirPods 3 might have inherited the AirPods Pro design, but they won’t get the noise cancelation feature that’s exclusive to the more expensive models.

Other reports have said in the past that the next-gen AirPods and AirPods Pro models will arrive this year but offered different launch estimates. Well-known leaker Ming-Chi Kuo said the AirPods 3 would not be ready until the third quarter of the year.

That said, we’ve seen the purported AirPods 3 design in various leaks so far. Also noteworthy is that AirPods 3 knock-offs originating from China have already been spotted in the wild. This can be interpreted both as a confirmation that the design renders were accurate and an indication that the actual AirPods 3 earphones will be launched very soon. The leaker doesn’t offer an actual release date for the AirPods 3 or the Pencil 3.

Since fake AirPods 3 are already selling in some parts of the world, the image above might show just another copycat. There’s no way to tell whether the device in the image is the real thing or not.

We’ll just have to wait for the press conference to see whether Apple plans to launch AirPods 3 in the near future. Apple’s Spring Loaded event is scheduled for April 20th, and will be streamed online.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.

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