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Opinion: The new AirPods are exactly the wireless headphones I wanted Apple to make


When Apple introduced the AirPods Pro in late 2019, ordinary AirPods were immediately made “cool”. The handles were shorter, the sound was better, there were real buttons, and the case had a landscape design that is undoubtedly new. But AirPods Pro has always had a fundamental flaw for me. They just don’t fit my ears. None of the interchangeable tips involved ever helped me. I know this is unusual because people usually say that the AirPods Pro fits their ears better than standard AirPods headphones, but the original design of the AirPods was infinitely more comfortable for me. Third-generation AirPods take the best of both and combine them into one pair of near-perfect wireless headphones.

Much better suited than AirPods Pro

It took Apple a long time to release the third generation AirPods headset. They originally leaked many months ago, and we wondered with each virtual event if the new AirPods would have their debut. Well, they finally did last week at Apple’s special “Unleashed” event.

I heard a few loud voices on Twitter lamenting the new AirPods headphones, saying they were too bulky and uncomfortable. That was not my experience at all. The third-generation AirPods fit much better than the AirPods Pro, and are still more comfortable than the second-generation AirPods.

AirPods Pro have been constantly falling out of my ears for the past two years, especially as I walked down the street. I always have to push them in or adjust the angle. Too much movement and they jump off the ship. I’ve always been disappointed because AirPods Pro have incredibly deep sound. But they always try to get out of my ears, leaving me wanting something better.

But the third generation AirPods headset has succeeded.

Much better sound

The original and second generation AirPods had OK sound. They were good in terms of quality, but perfect for activities on the go. Access to AirPods headphones that suits everyone has always been better for my ears, so when I first discovered in March that the third generation AirPods would not have replaceable tops, I was thrilled.

The sound quality is noticeably better on the new AirPods compared to their predecessors, but not so different as to suit the AirPods Pro. You can still hear a lot of outside noise, which is to be expected. In a big city like New York, I don’t want the noise canceled. I want to hear enough about my surroundings to keep moving around the city safely. After all, the third generation AirPod has a much better sound if you come from the second generation or the original AirPods. But if you care most about sound quality, consider sticking to AirPods Pro.

Battery life and charging improvements

One really new thing I wanted Apple to add is MagSafe compatibility. The new third generation AirPods headphones are the first to be magnetically attached to the MagSafe charger. Apple has also upgraded the AirPods Pro with a MagSafe holster, but that’s a major feature here. It hangs right on my MagSafe Duo and my MagSafe battery pack. You cannot accidentally place AirPods in a slightly inclined position. You can be sure that it will charge due to the new alignment magnet.

Battery life is something AirPods have always been good at. I ever had to charge my AirPods, AirPods Pro and AirPods Max only once a week, sometimes every two, depending on usage. The new third generation AirPods has a longer battery life than the second generation AirPod and AirPods Pro. I have never heard the sound of a low battery with these new headphones, and I usually hold them long enough during the work day to finally hear it at least once. The extra battery life in the headphones is definitely a welcome improvement. But the best part is the new case which has a refined shape and an extra six hours of battery life compared to previous AirPods cases.

Proper button controls

The original AirPods had a touch movement that was quite picky. But AirPods Pro got clamping handles that had adjustable controls. The new third generation AirPods finally have the same button controls introduced by AirPods Pro. You can now squeeze the stems to play / pause the music and go back and forth. You no longer have to look at your phone or watch to change a song.

Water resistance for the rest of us

Another feature that the third generation of AirPods steals from AirPods Pro is their resistance to sweat and water. Both the headphones and the charging case are waterproof IPX4. They’re not waterproof, so you shouldn’t try to swim with them or do some intense water sports, but if you’re running in the rain or sweating like crazy, you can rest easy.

Should I buy them?

If you’re happy with your AirPods Pro, then you definitely don’t need to take a pair of third-generation AirPods. But if you have the same docking problems and want a longer battery life, the third-generation AirPods headset is a welcome long-awaited upgrade.

Owners of genuine or second-generation AirPods should also consider upgrading. Tactile controls and extended battery life are welcome improvements. Still, surround sound is a kind of trick in this particular context. For a really good surround sound experience, you need active noise removal.

What about the cheaper model?

The previous generation AirPods headphones now have a price tag of just $ 129, which leaves a lot of space between them and the new third generation AirPods at $ 179. If you want compressed stems, a new design, longer battery life and MagSafe, you should absolutely consider spending an extra $ 50.

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Naveen Kumar

Friendly communicator. Music maven. Explorer. Pop culture trailblazer. Social media practitioner.

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