New AirPods have been waiting for a long time, but, as always, many were waiting for some miracles. There were rumors that the headphones would measure temperature, height, weight, heart rate, give advice on self-development and improve well-being. Naturally, any AirPods can help you with this – take them with you for a run, turn on an English lesson or some useful podcast. I think that Apple has appointed the Apple Watch as the main device for knowing oneself, but in headphones everything is aimed at entertainment, multimedia, communication. And miracles from corporations in our time should not be expected – Apple, of course, works wonders, but in this case, everything is a little mundane.
Well, how mundane can be an ultra-modern pleasant device with great sound, wireless, for good money and with all the Apple chips. Household magic familiar to us.
But there are, of course, questions for the firm.
The video is already on the channel:
Why does Apple need AirPods 3?
In general, the headphones are called the third generation AirPods, but let’s call them AirPods 3 for convenience.
The answer seems to be obvious, but we spent an hour in the office arguing and screaming, and everyone remained unconvinced. Probably, it is worth writing a separate article about this, but now I want to dwell on a few important thoughts. For Apple, AirPods are a very important business from every angle. This is a very important part of the ecosystem, as there are their own music, game and video services – in order to consume them properly, you need the right accessories.
Nobody expected, but AirPods have become a very important element of the world during the pandemic – millions of people are now sitting with headphones in Zuma, at calls, meetings.
Well, AirPods sometimes sell iPhones to people – many Android users buy an accessory to try, and the trial leads to a complete change in the consumer pattern.
There is one more thing – I am deliberately silent about the many, many, many millions of different versions of AirPods sold. AirPods are five years old this year, and many have been waiting for some kind of anniversary model, something special. You know, it’s like an electronic game “Wait a minute!” – I was also a Soviet child waiting for the cartoon at the end. There was no cartoon at the end. There will be no anniversary AirPods either. Instead, the long-awaited expansion of the lineup.
In the AirPods line, the third model fills the gap between the base AirPods and AirPods Pro. There is no noise reduction and transparency mode, there is an excellent driver and support for spatial audio. There is basic protection against water and sweat. There is one thing: if regular AirPods did not suit you, and AirPods Pro seemed too large, maybe AirPods 3 will do. This is the true purpose of the model – not only to fill the price niche, but also the ergonomic niche.
Well, here’s the price difference. Anticipating the question of what to choose, I would strongly advise you to go somewhere to the store and try on AirPods 3. Although if you wear AirPods Pro without any problems, then you will definitely like them.
Everything is like the first AirPods, only now the headphones are added to the “Locator”. So if I decide to donate them, then I will need to clear all information from iCloud beforehand. The same applies to preparing the headphones for sale.
I usually write about design first, but here design is not as important as sound. I live all day today with basic AirPods, AirPods Pro, and AirPods 3. Basic sound in simple AirPods is fine for most scenarios, and it sounds pretty normal these days. Well, AirPods Pro are more suitable for music lovers, sound lovers – here you have a healthy driver with an amplifier, well-chosen nozzles give a lot. Previously, if you wanted more sound and more functions, I always advised “pro”.
Now the situation has changed. AirPods 3 also has a healthy and very well tuned driver. AirPods Pro have better detail, better mids and highs. The AirPods 3 have great bass, a lot of it, but it doesn’t overwhelm the rest of the picture.
Interestingly, each AirPods has its own sound and it is not possible to rank the headphones. Now, against the background of love for the next novelty, I will walk with AirPods 3 – the more they sat down cool. Alas, Pro can not be worn for a long time, but with the novelty I easily sat for a couple of hours, as if they were not in my ears. Affected by the lack of elastic and a different body.
Headphones perform well with YouTube, with podcasts, with Call Of Duty: Mobile. It is pleasant to do all your daily activities with them, including talking on the phone. I don’t have to repeat something to the interlocutor, everyone understands me the first time. The magic is in place. Apple again managed to cram into a compact body a large, properly configured driver, dual microphones for voice transmission and another microphone directed inward (apparently, for the adaptive equalizer to work).
As for spatial audio, sometimes you want to turn this function off, but everything is simple here. Every track in Apple Music is prepared by more than one team, and millions of different people. Therefore, the preparation of the “master” from album to album is different. Someone bothers, and then you really feel a very interesting effect when you wrap yourself up in music, like in a blanket. Someone does it in such a way that it would be better if there was nothing new. I’ll tell you more: this applies to all music in general in any service. The final preparation of the album is extremely important, and here the questions are not for headphones or smartphones, but for the musicians.
But in any case, do not be lazy to go to the “Music” section in the iOS settings and turn on / off the volume correction there. Then click on the volume slider and see what state you have “Stereo in space”. And only then, after listening to different tracks and different albums, you will understand whether you need it or not. I chose the setting “Stereo in space: static”, I like it better.
The main thing is that there is support for IPX4: you can run or walk in the rain, you can play sports, sweat protection is present. My headphones sit tight, do not fly out with sudden movements, but the fit is an individual matter.
The case is slightly smaller than the Pro, but slightly larger than the regular AirPods. Headphones fly into the grooves instantly. The charging connector has not changed, His Majesty Lightning. I’m not talking about USB Type-C. Now there is support for MagSafe, you can and should use with branded “tablets”.
Working time is about 6 hours. If we talk about the case, it gives about 30 hours. I have already said more than once that modern TWS can work forever – I listened for a couple of hours in the office, put it in a case, once every couple of days I put the case on wireless charging. In five minutes, the earbuds charge for an hour of listening.
Here’s a size comparison with AirPods and AirPods Pro:
There is practically no passive noise cancellation – these are open headphones with all the ensuing features. I now listen to music and hear Arseny, I can talk to him, because I can hear my own voice. Absolutely everything will be heard on the plane. Neighbors will hear your content and your music, especially if you turn it up.
That is, these earbuds sit differently than AirPods, but don’t give you the passive noise canceling of the Pro.
There are a couple more nuances. With the base AirPods, you could reassign two actions on each earbud. In Pro, you can reassign control of the noise canceling system or calling Siri – this is in addition to full control of other functions. So, AirPods 3 have the same scheme, only without noise control. And this is very convenient: by calling Siri, you can even make it quieter without hands! Probably, you will never do that, but the trick was successful the first time.
The control system is the same as in the Pro: we hold the leg with two fingers until it clicks the required number of times.
The headphones use the H1 chip – the same as in the entire AirPods line. Well, I also need to say about the support for Bluetooth 5.0 – the range of work in the office is about eight to nine meters, the connection is fast, switching between devices is also. Today I tried to use AirPods 3 with iMac, iPad Pro, iPhone, no problems.
Here we still need to remember about the pandemic – it seems that AirPods 3 could have been presented last fall / winter, but Apple decided to postpone the launch for some reason. Either there were not enough components, or it was necessary to put a large edition at retail by Christmas 2021, or there were other unknown reasons. It is clear that the product will become a hit, no doubt about that, but there is one thing.
There are a lot of TWS on the market right now, and even 100-dollar devices are getting active noise cancellation, transparency mode and other features. At the same time, the price of AirPods 3 in Russia is $174.98, and nothing of the above is not here – if the first AirPods were revolutionary in themselves, then you expect a new breakthrough from the third generation. In fact, we get excellent AirPods with all the usual magic, but all the chips like spatial audio need to be explained to the consumer for a long time.
Here’s what might confuse people: why not give a little more for great AirPods Pro with cool features, best noise canceling in its class, and best transparency mode? Isn’t that the best choice? I repeat my thought again: AirPods 3 do not remove regular AirPods and do not affect AirPods Pro in any way. And in general, in the case of Apple, one consumer formula “whoever needs it will buy” works perfectly. It is very good when the assortment includes INCREDIBLE REVOLUTIONARY THINGS, and understandable things for our daily life: for music, conversations, tiktoks and zooms.
I hope this makes it clearer.
In general, I have no questions for AirPods 3: an excellent product, a future hit of sales. I guess Apple is preparing a lot more tricks for its headphone line with new updates.
And all of this is just fine. And I will praise the company for the timely announcement of the model – yes, it was definitely worth the wait to sell everything at once. It’s no longer possible to find headphones in Moscow. The ability to make engraving is invaluable. This is what our Ilya Kazakov did: