Apple AirPods 3 specs, news and rumours: What will we see from the third-generation AirPods

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(Pocket-lint) - Apple's AirPods person been highly palmy since they archetypal arrived implicit 4 years ago. Since the archetypal generation, we've had the second-gen exemplary successful aboriginal 2019 successful the AirPods 2 or AirPods with wireless charging arsenic they were officially called, followed by the genuinely spectacular AirPods Pro

While we'll screen the rumours surrounding the 2nd procreation of AirPods Pro wrong this feature, we're mostly acrophobic with the merchandise we'll telephone AirPods 3 - the update of the main AirPods.

For each the rumours surrounding the AirPods Pro 2, you tin read our abstracted feature.

What volition the caller AirPods beryllium called? 

  • Probably conscionable AirPods
  • Could person a 3rd procreation suffix

Given Apple's penchant for sticking with the aforesaid name, we expect that immoderate replacement merchandise for the existent AirPods would inactive beryllium called, simply, AirPods.

Maybe they would person a '3rd generation' addendum, but they'd astir surely inactive beryllium AirPods and we judge that rumours they'd beryllium called AirPods Lite oregon AirPods Pro Lite are mode disconnected the mark. 

Release day and price

  • Later successful 2021

The AirPods 2 launched successful March 2019, suggesting the adjacent procreation exemplary mightiness person appeared successful the archetypal fractional of 2021. Apple held an lawsuit successful April with nary motion of the AirPods 3 however, and the rumoured day of 18 May was besides wrong.

For now, determination are nary much rumours indicating a circumstantial motorboat date, though accumulation is claimed to beryllium happening successful August, suggesting we should spot them earlier the twelvemonth is out. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman - who is typically a precise reliable root - has said the entry-level AirPods update volition get earlier the extremity of the year.

In presumption of price, if it was immoderate different company, it could beryllium imaginable that the AirPods 3 would question to people the $99/£99 market, which seems to beryllium becoming the cardinal battleground for true wireless earphones. But Apple tends not to interest excessively overmuch astir terms constituent truthful it's much apt they volition travel successful astatine astir $150/£150.

Design and caller features

  • Shorter plan similar AirPods Pro?
  • Sweatproof fittingness mentation could beryllium connected the way

A caller mentation of the modular AirPods could follow a somewhat shorter plan similar the AirPods Pro. A fewer leaked images suggests their plan volition beryllium successful betwixt the AirPods 2 and the AirPods Pro. It's claimed they volition spot the biggest plan update since they launched successful 2016.

Water-resistance has agelong been rumoured arsenic has immoderate sound simplification technology. They are improbable to person afloat progressive sound cancelling due to the fact that that would necessitate a choky seal and, arsenic such, volition surely stay the sphere of the much costly AirPods Pro.

Apple AirPods 3 alleged hands-on representation leaked connected Weibo.#Apple #AirPods3 #AppleEvent pic.twitter.com/m7Zv3lvt1F

— Mukul Sharma (@stufflistings) April 16, 2021

There could besides beryllium a fig of different hardware upgrades including a caller spot - the W2 has been suggested, longer artillery beingness and much speech time. They'll surely erstwhile again person a wireless charging lawsuit but we deliberation it improbable they'll person immoderate benignant of noise-cancelling, alternatively leaving that to the AirPods Pro. 

Rumours for the older AirPods 2 primitively predicted that the caller AirPods mightiness diagnostic a caller coating to marque them much grippable and little droppable, portion besides coming successful achromatic and achromatic colour options. Could this hap for AirPods 3? 

Will determination beryllium an AirPods Sport version?

  • A fittingness mentation is simply a no-brainer
  • Could they beryllium afloat waterproof?

The AirPods Pro are h2o and sweat resistant but they are not waterproof oregon sweatproof. We inactive deliberation it imaginable that determination could beryllium a fitness-orientated mentation of the AirPods that's some h2o and sweatproof. Sweat is simply a headphone killer, but our AirPods Pro are doing conscionable fine, thanks.

If they were waterproof it would beryllium alternatively chill if you could instrumentality them swimming with Apple Watch swim tracking. More apt though, they volition beryllium h2o and sweat resistant similar the AirPods Pro.

AirPods Pro 3: All the rumours truthful far

Here are each the details successful chronological bid for the caller AirPods.

16 August 2021: Apple Watch Series 7 to bring Time to Run feature, M1X MacBook Pro coming soon

Mark Gurman of Bloomberg claims the entry-level AirPods volition connection the biggest plan update since they launched successful 2016, including shorter stems and a caller in-ear shape.

21 July 2021: Apple mightiness commencement making AirPods 3 soon, iPhone SE 5G apt coming too

Souces talking to Nikkei claimed Apple is starting accumulation of the AirPods 3 from August 2021.

14 May 2021: Will Apple's AirPods 3 motorboat connected May 18?

According to a leak from YouTuber Luke MIani arsenic reported by 9to5Mac via the Apple Track site, Apple volition motorboat the AirPods 3 adjacent week.

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20 April 2021: Apple Event confirmed: Here's erstwhile we'll get a caller iPad Pro, iMac, AirTags

Apple sent retired invitations to an lawsuit connected 20 April, with the invitation featuring the tagline Spring Loaded. The AirPods 3 could look astatine the lawsuit alongside AirTags and caller iPads, though thing is confirmed arsenic yet.

16 April 2021: Another leaked representation of the caller AirPods

Another image surfaces, corroborating erstwhile leaks and making the caller AirPods look a batch similar a somewhat little in-ear mentation of the AirPods Pro. 

15 March 2021: Maybe they won't motorboat until aboriginal successful 2021

Infamous Apple expert Ming-Chi Kuo now suggests that the caller AirPods won't motorboat until the 3rd 4th of 2021 - presumably alongside the adjacent iPhone. We had thought they would debut successful precocious March. Kuo believes the caller headphones aren't acceptable yet, which isn't what it looks similar below...

11 March 2021: Here's what the Apple AirPods 3 mightiness look like

A leak from LeaksApplePro shows immoderate hands-on shots of what the AirPods 3 could look like.

LeaksApplePro

Apple AirPods 3 specs quality    and rumours What volition  we spot    from the third-generation AirPods photograph  3

9 March 2021: Apple acceptable to denote 23 March lawsuit for AirTags and caller iPads

A study has claimed Apple volition clasp an lawsuit connected 23 March. The agelong rumoured AirTags are expected, alongside caller iPads and determination has besides been a notation of AirPods astatine the presently unconfirmed event.

22 February 2021: Are these our archetypal glimpse of Apple's adjacent AirPods?

52Audio posted an image of what is claimed to beryllium the AirPods 3. The representation shows a plan precise akin to the AirPods Pro but without the moulded tips. 

52Audio

Apple AirPods 3 specs quality    and rumours What volition  we spot    from the third-generation AirPods photograph  2

The lawsuit is simply a small wider than the AirPods 2 lawsuit but little wide than the Pro case, portion the earphones themselves are intelligibly but subtly antithetic than the existing AirPods connected the market.

19 February 2021: Will determination beryllium an Apple Event connected 16 March?

LeaksApplePro reported that an Apple lawsuit could instrumentality spot connected 16 March. The AirPods 3, caller iPads and the long-rumoured AirTags are each rumoured to appear.

27 January 2021: Apple AirPods 3 could beryllium coming soon, different study suggests

A study from Digitimes claimed the AirPods Pro 2 and AirPods 3 are acceptable to motorboat successful the archetypal fractional of 2021 aft a flash retention supplier was said to beryllium ramping up production.

10 January 2021: Apple AirPods Pro 2 to motorboat successful April 2021

A study from Macotakara claimed the AirPods 3 and AirPods Pro 2 could get successful April 2021, alongside the iPhone SE.

9 December 2020: Apple launches AirPods Max

Apple launched a brace of high-end, wireless over-ear headphones called AirPods Max. Long-rumoured, we thought they would beryllium called AirPods Studio. They usage overmuch of the aforesaid tech arsenic the AirPods Pro, but with bigger dependable and a striking metallic design. 

September-November 2020: Apple Special Events instrumentality place, but nary AirPods

Apple hosted its Time Flies Special Event connected 15 September, announcing the Apple Watch Series 6, Apple Watch SE, caller entry-level iPad, caller iPad Air and caller services including Fitness+. Then successful October it launched the iPhone 12 bid portion successful November it hosted the lawsuit that saw the Mac lineup commencement to determination from Intel to Apple's ain processors. 

8 September 2020: Apple announces Special Event

Apple announced it would beryllium holding a virtual Special Event connected 15 September. It is not known what volition beryllium announced astatine the event, but the AirPods 3 are a possibility.

8 July 2020: Apple AirPods 3 predicted to determination towards AirPods Pro design

A study suggests the AirPods 3 volition instrumentality connected a caller plan akin to the AirPods Pro. TF Securities expert Ming-Chi Kuo claims the 3rd gen exemplary volition determination to a system-in-chip solution similar the AirPods Pro.

22 June 2020: Automatic switching coming to each AirPods models

As portion of iOS 14, AirPods volition seamlessly switch betwixt Apple devices, truthful if you unfastened up your MacBook, iPhone oregon iPad, your AirPods volition observe erstwhile you're changing the desired audio root to a caller device. Quite however this volition enactment successful signifier is interesting, due to the fact that what if idiosyncratic other starts to usage your different device? Hopefully, it volition beryllium customisable. 

Also spatial audio is coming to AirPods Pro - including enactment for Dolby Atmos - acknowledgment to caput tracking tech wrong the premium AirPods. We'd emotion to spot this wrong the AirPods 3. 

8 May 2020: Apple producing immoderate AirPods successful Vietnam, imaginable AirPods 3 delay

Nikkei says that Apple has shifted immoderate AirPods accumulation retired of China into Vietnam. The study besides seems to awesome a hold successful accumulation that could spot the caller exemplary delayed beyond the extremity of 2020. The determination seems to beryllium portion of a diversification of manufacturing arsenic the US-China commercialized struggle rumbles on. 

6 May 2020: Analyst says immoderate AirPods are inactive going to ship

Apple expert Jon Prosser suggests that immoderate AirPods are being readied for shipping, but it's unclear if this is existent oregon not. Prosser's proclamations request to beryllium taken loosely, since we've not heard this from elsewhere. 

25 April 2020: AirPods 3 acceptable for aboriginal 2021

Noted expert Ming-Chi Kuo suggests that caller AirPods are apt to beryllium delayed until 2021 arsenic a effect of accumulation changes. He besides says that a second-generation of the AirPods Pro 2 won't beryllium with america until aboriginal 2022, though we'd decidedly instrumentality that with a pinch of salt. 

20 April 2020: Could Apple merchandise AirPods 3 successful the coming weeks?

Jon Prosser believed the AirPods 3 motorboat could hap successful the adjacent period alongside the MacBook Pro 14-inch. 

12 February 2020: New AirPods successful aboriginal 2020?

A Digitimes study suggests that immoderate AirPods volition beryllium made successful Taiwan alternatively of China (Update: cheque retired the Vietnam communicative above) and that determination volition beryllium a caller exemplary successful aboriginal 2020.  

Writing by Dan Grabham. Editing by Britta O'Boyle. Originally published connected 6 May 2020.

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