Apple is announcing a bunch of new products today, including new iPhones and Apple Watches. The company also revealed a second-generation version of the AirPods Pro.
The new AirPods Pro isn’t a radical redesign compared to the current model, which isn’t too surprising — the current model is still a great pair of wireless earbuds. It has an updated H2 chip, which Apple says improves audio processing. Active Noise Cancellation is now twice as responsive, as the updated hardware can detect surrounding changes quicker — Apple used an example of construction equipment on a busy road as an example. There’s also a new low-distortion audio driver, and a custom amplifier. Touch controls have been improved as well, with a new touchpad for adjusting the volume.
The new model also has ‘ersonalized Spacial Audio, an updated version of the Spatial Audio feature available on Apple’s other headphones. You can now use the True Depth camera on supported iPhones to scan your ear, which will then be used to create more accurate sound mapping for the AirPods. However, Spatial Audio is still a bit of a gimmick, so it remains to be seen how well it will work on the new AirPods Pro.
Battery life has been improved as well. Apple is promising six hours of listening time on a single charge, which doesn’t quite match some competitors, but is 33% more than the original model. If you can occasionally put the earbuds back in the case, the buds and case combined can get you 30 hours of listening time before you have to find a charger.
Finally, there are a few minor changes to the case. There’s now a speaker bult into the case, so it can emit a sound when you lose it for easy location. There’s also a lanyard loop on the side now.
The new AirPods Pro will cost $249, the same price as the old version. It will go on sale on September 9, and start shipping on September 23.