Great news, AirPods fans: a new report from trusted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo states that Apple will be unveiling the new generation of AirPods as part of today's confirmed iPhone 13 event. The hotly-anticipated AirPods 3 are, essentially, the new iteration of Apple’s second-gen AirPods, which were released in March 2019.
But here's the rub: as first noted by 9to5Mac, Kuo says that Apple will keep selling the older 2019 AirPods when the new models ship. This, he suggests, either means that the AirPods 3 will be sold at a higher price point – the current models start at £159 / $159 / AU$249 for the earbuds without the wireless charging case or £249 / $249 / AU$319 with it – or that AirPods 2 will see a price drop alongside the AirPods 3 release, meaning that the newest models could then adopt the current AirPods 2 price point.
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Kuo is careful with his predictions though, and is clearly hedging his bets on which scenario is most likely. Instead, he reiterates that AirPods 2 and AirPods 3 will be sold simultaneously as AirPods 2 production continues.
Based on everything we know so far, the new AirPods 3 are expected to feature a new design that resembles the shape of the current Apple AirPods Pro, notably featuring shorter stems on the earbuds themselves.
Currently, the Cupertino giant's second-generation AirPods are sold in two models: with and without the Qi wireless charging case. We expect Apple to offer the AirPods 3 with only one case this time – a wireless one. Welcome to your wireless future.
Meanwhile, the AirPods Pro 2 are not expected to launch at today's Apple Event and, according to Kuo, will arrive next year.
Apple’s annual fall media event, which kicks off at 10am PT / 1pm ET / 6pm BST / 3am AEST today, Tuesday 14th September, is expected to give us our first official look at the Apple iPhone 13 lineup and the new Apple Watch Series 7 too. Stay tuned to What Hi-Fi? for all the news as the event unfolds...
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