Apple AirPods are great. They're inoffensive to the eyes, they're functional and they sound nice. There's just a few things dragging them down. They don't cancel out noise emanating from annoying colleagues and you can't dunk them in the sink. But 2020 might be the year the AirPods finally get the glow up we all deserve.
The conversation is getting old. You know, the one about how Apple isn’t innovating with new hardware because the future of its business is in services and streaming video and this new Apple credit card that blah blah blah. But a lot of people point out one exception, one new Apple product that feels truly revolutionary and very good: AirPods. The second generation AirPods have arrived, and I can confidently say that they are very good. As an upgrade, I guess they’re fine. They’re not revolutionary, and that’s ok.
The 2020 AirPods are set to have some very interesting functions, according to a Bloomberg report. They'll allegedly be suped up with noise-cancelling technology and will finally be water-resistant.
Naturally, Bloomberg also warned the new AirPods would likely "be more expensive" than the second generation that currently retail for $249 if you want the fancy wireless charging case (you do).
In March 2019, Apple released its second generation of AirPods with a H1 chip and "Hey Siri" support. It also reckoned its battery life could offer 50 per cent more talk time over the first generation.
With more of us wanting noise-cancelling technology built in with our regular headphones, if the reports turn out to be confirmed, the Apple AirPods would enter a market with tough competition. Bose has the QuietComfort 20, Sony's recent WF-1000XM3's are excellent and Apple even has its own sporty entry with Beats Powerbeats Pro.
The latter isn't noise cancelling, but is a whole lot more sweat resistant the AirPods. It also isn't likely to pop out of your ears when exercising due to its ear loops.
The AirPods would likely match the Powerbeats Pros for price, or even exceed them, but while they won't have the ability to be used for activities or sports, the Apple brand is likely to still bring it over the line. It'll ultimately be up to style, quality and price for most customers, so we'll have to see if Apple can manage to hit all three.
Sony recently dropped its latest offering to the sound gods - the WF-1000XM3 truly wireless noise cancelling headphones. This inner-ear music delivery system is a bold move. It's notoriously difficult to achieve both noise cancellation and great sound quality in non-over-ear headphones. Let's see if Sony managed to deliver.