Skip to main content

Beats headphones getting AirPods-style Audio Sharing

Beats headphones to get AirPods' Audio Sharing feature
(Image credit: Beats)

Audio Sharing is one of the new audio features arriving as part of Apple's imminent iOS 13 operating system, allowing two people to listen to the same audio from one iPhone. In other words, it's the virtual equivalent a headphone splitter. 

When the next-gen OS was announced in June, rumour had it the nifty feature would only be supported by Apple AirPods and Powerbeats Pro wireless earphones. But now Apple's flipped the script and announced Audio Sharing for all Beats-branded headphones with an Apple H1 or Apple W1 chip.

Starting September 23rd, the Powerbeats Pro, Powerbeats 3 Wireless, BeatsX, Solo 3 Wireless and Studio 3 Wireless headphones will support it.

One of the most convenient things about Audio Sharing is that it offers separate volume controls for each listener, meaning both parties can set their preferred listening level (frequently a bone of contention in the old days of analogue headphone splitters).

Not all iOS 13 devices will support the Audio Sharing, though. It'll be limited to the iPhone 8 and later, iPad Pro 12.9-inch (second generation) and later, iPad Air third generationiPad Mini 5th generation and iPod Touch seventh generation

Also, there's no word on whether Audio Sharing will be supported by other third-party purveyors of music sources and headphones. Given that the tech is primarily driven by Bluetooth 5.0, we expect a few other manufacturers jump on the Audio Sharing bandwagon.

Not an Apple user? There's no need to feel left out: most Android phones with Bluetooth 5.0 already offer wireless audio sharing functionality.

MORE:

Bowers & Wilkins expands PX range of ANC wireless headphones

Audeze LCD-i3: aptX HD wireless earbuds with Lightning and 3.5mm cables

Best Apple AirPods alternatives 2019: budget to premium