“Apple’s AirPods aren’t just special because they are one of the few ‘truly wireless’ earbud headphones available — models with separate left and right earpieces that aren’t tethered together with a cable,” Sharon Profis writes for CNET. “Along with three Beats headphones (the PowerBeats3 Wireless, the Solo3 Wireless and the BeatsX) they’re one of only a handful of products that incorporate Apple’s new W1 chip, a teeny-tiny piece of hardware that will make your forget how awful pairing over Bluetooth can be.”

“Like the A-series chips that power iPhones and iPads, the W1 is custom Apple-designed silicon,” Profis writes. “In addition to standard Bluetooth 4.1 streaming and advanced power management, the chip adds a host of key features unique to the AirPods, including balancing all of that sophisticated syncing (between the two earpieces, the case and the audio source) with the sensor inputs (automatically pausing music if you remove one from your ear).”

iPhone 7 with Apple's AirPods

iPhone 7 with Apple’s AirPods

“The big advantage of W1-enabled headphones is that ‘they just work’ — when you’re using them with a compatible Apple device,” Profis writes. “You probably noticed that the only W1 headphones available are made by Apple or its Beats subsidiary. Apple hasn’t expressed intentions to license the W1 chip, so don’t expect W1 headphones from Bose or the like anytime soon.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Magical.

Apple’s W1-equipped wireless BeatsX earphones ship Feb. 10 – February 7, 2017
Powerbeats3 with Apple W1 chip are the most reliable Bluetooth headphones ever – December 3, 2016
Apple’s remarkable new A10, S2, W1 chips alter the semiconductor landscape – September 15, 2016
Hands-on: Beats Solo3 Wireless Headphones with Apple’s magical new W1 chip – September 15, 2016
Apple’s innovative W1 chip is a big deal, but I fear it will also be a missed opportunity – September 12, 2016
iPhone 7/Plus is a $5 billion opportunity for Beats – September 8, 2016
Apple reinvents the wireless headphone with AirPods – September 7, 2016