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Apple Launches New AirPods with Wireless Charging, Hey Siri and More!

new AirPods

Another day, another Apple surprise! It seems like Cooks’ week of hardware trojan horse continues to gallop a week ahead of its “Showtime” event on 25th March.

Up until now, we’ve been blessed with two new iPads and an iMac update. And, today it was Apple’s annoyingly ubiquitous AirPods who stole the limelight. The rumour mill had been flooded with questions like what’s the next ‘big thing’ for the AirPods. Noise cancellation? Wireless charging? Always-on Siri? Hey, how about all of the above? Yup, it’s legit!

Meet AirPods 2.0

Apple’s latest AirPods, which Cook unveiled in a similar fashion as the iPads, come with the newly designed H1 chip (engineered by Apple) and is aimed at faster connect times. It also boasts of improved synchronisation as well as two-times faster switching between your iOS devices, the Apple Watch or Macs.

That’s not all! Apple promises a better battery life and, yes, hands-free “Hey Siri” too! Meaning, your new wireless earphones will always be at your service, listening for your commands. Slightly creepy, but I’ll make it work!

Wireless Charging for the New and the Old!

The new AirPods come with either the standard old school case or a brand new wireless charging case. Don’t panic. Apple won’t cut the slightly old AirPod lose as it did with the iPhones, at least not yet. You can buy the standalone wireless charging case for your gen-one AirPods, at a hefty price, of course.

Both the cases will still hold a top-up charge for “more than 24 hours of total listening time”. And if you’ve already burnt a hole in your pocket by buying the wireless charging case, then you’ll be happy to know that it is Qi-compatible, so may use the wireless chargers you’re already using with your new(ish) iPhone.

We initially expected the AirPods 2 to be radically different from their predecessors, something a little more futuristic like the TV from ‘The Jetsons’, thanks to trademark and Bluetooth SIG filings, but judging from Cook’s tweet and the surprise launch that doesn’t seem to be the case.

India Launch & Prices

As for the availability and price, the new AirPods with standard case cost Rs. 14,900, which is Rs. 2,000 more than the previous model. However, when you throw in the fancy new wireless case, the price jumps up to Rs. 18900.

Too much? Well, here’s a suggestion. Stick with your not so old AirPods and instead splurge on the wireless charging case as a standalone item for Rs. 7,500. Not cheap but not exorbident either.

AirPods lovers in the US and a few other lucky countries can order the new models today. For India, the AirPods will go on sale ‘later this spring’. Happy Waiting Fellas!


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