Apple is working on next-generation AirPods and AirPods Pro, a third-generation entry-level AirPods model and the second-generation of the premium AirPods Pro, and looks to debut both in 2021.
Apple’s AirPods Pro feature Active Noise Cancellation and superior, immersive sound in an all-new lightweight, in-ear design.
The design of the updated entry-level AirPods will be similar to the current AirPods Pro, gaining a shorter stem and replaceable ear tips. Apple is also looking to improve battery life. That model however will not have higher-end AirPods Pro features like noise-cancellation, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing private matters.
MacDailyNews Take: Yup.
A little birdie tells us that DigiTimes‘ “AirPods Pro Lite” are actually AirPods (3rd gen.) which offer the new shorter-stem AirPods Pro design sans active noise cancellation. — MacDailyNews, March 5, 2020
Apple already sells AirPods Pro Lite. They’re called AirPods. – MacDailyNews, February 12, 2020
DigiTimes' "AirPods Pro Lite" are AirPods. That is all. pic.twitter.com/7F0OnWnkFz
— MacDailyNews (@MacDailyNews) February 21, 2020
For the new AirPods Pro, Apple is aiming to make the earbuds more compact by eliminating the short stem that currently sticks out from the bottom. A design in testing has a more rounded shape that fills more of a user’s a ear… Integrating noise-cancellation, wireless antennas and microphones into a smaller AirPods Pro casing has proved challenging during development, which could result in a less ambitious design when the product is finalized, the people said.
Apple has internally discussed launching the new low-end AirPods during the first half of next year. The company is also planning new wireless chips to power both models.
MacDailyNews Take: We can’t wait to see what the Apple H2 chip, coming in the first half of 2021, can do as the H1 chip in our AirPods Pro were a big step up from the W1 found in the original AirPods.
The Apple H1 headphone chip in second-gen AirPods and AirPods Pro, delivers higher-quality sound, a faster and more stable wireless connection to your devices — up to 2x faster than the W1 when switching between active devices, and a 1.5x faster connection time for phone calls. The H1 chip also drives voice-enabled Siri access and delivers up to 30% lower gaming latency.