Back in 2016, Apple launched its first-generation AirPods at an Apple Special Event alongside the iPhone 7 and Apple Watch Series 2. Initially, Apple’s first wireless was considered a joke and made fun of. A lot of people thought they looked awkward and were confident they’d fall out of ears and disappear.
What are AirPods?
If you are new to AirPods, it is Apple’s first completely wire-free headphones equipped with a unique wireless chip. It also has other sensors, including a dual optical sensor, accelerometer, dual beamforming microphones, and another accelerometer for speech detection.
So far, the company has launched two versions of the AirPods – the original AirPods and the second-generation AirPods. In the latest development, Apple has quietly launched AirPods Pro with Active Noise Cancellation and other features. So let’s have a look at the difference between the ordinary and Pro version of AirPods.
AirPods Pro comes with an all-new design!
Unlike the other two AirPods, the Pro variant comes with a new in-ear design engineered for comfort and fit. Each earbud comes with three different sizes of soft, flexible silicone ear tips offering immersive sound. Notably, this AirPods sits in your ear canal, while the regular one sits on your ear.
Sweat and water-resistant unlike standard AirPods
While the regular AirPods lacks any resistance, the AirPods Pro comes with sweat- and water-resistant features. Furthermore, it uses an innovative vent system to equalise pressure, minimising the discomfort common in other in-ear designs as well.
The Big Difference: Active Noise Cancellation and Adaptive EQ
The main difference potential AirPods owners will care about is Active Noise Cancellation and Adaptive EQ, which is available on the AirPods Pro but not the AirPods.
This is the first AirPods to come equipped with Active Noise Cancellation (ANC). For your information, it uses two microphones combined with advanced software to adapt to each ear, and headphones fit continuously. As a result, the background noises are removed, allowing a user to focus on what they’re listening to.
On the other hand, it has an Adaptive EQ feature, which tunes the low- and mid-frequencies of the music automatically to the shape of a user’s ear. It also has a high dynamic range amplifier designed to optimise audio quality and remove background noise.
Effective ANC + vented silicone tips = Transparency mode
Another big difference is the AirPods Pro use of Transparency mode, which lets users listen to music while still hearing the environment around them as well.
Switching between different modes can be done through a force sensor on the stem, again, which the standard AirPods lacks. This force sensor lets users play, pause or skip tracks, and answer or hang up phone calls.
AirPods Pro isn’t as compatible with some of the older Apple devices
The functionality of both AirPods and AirPods Pro is the same, thanks to the H1 chip featuring 10 audio cores. It powers everything from sound to Siri. Unlike standard AirPods, the Pro only works with Apple devices with iOS 13.2 or higher, iPadOS 13.2 or higher, watchOS 6.1 or higher, tvOS 13.2 or higher or macOS Catalina 10.15.1 or higher. Yet another change is the AirPods Pro wireless charging case is wider than the standard AirPods charging cases.
Same battery as regular AirPods!
AirPods Pro features the same excellent battery life as AirPods with up to five hours of listening time. In the Active Noise Cancellation mode, AirPods Pro offers up to four and a half hours of listening time and up to three and a half hours of talk time on a single charge. With additional charge from the Wireless Charging Case, AirPods Pro delivers over 24 hours of listening time or over 18 hours of talk time.
Is the upgrade worth it?
The AirPods Pro is the natural choice for people, especially iPhone users who want to buy wireless earphones. Since most of the elements are the same, a question might arise whether the extra price is worth it for these additional functions.
Well, paying a bit of premium for the ANC, Transparency Mode, and Charging Case as part of the upgrade is reasonable and worth going for it.
If you are a first-generation AirPods user looking for a replacement, AirPods Pro is a good move. We suggest the second-generation model users stick to their existing units instead of upgrading if you don’t value ANC.
Price and availability!
AirPods Pro will be available for € 279/£249 and are available to order from apple.com and in the Apple Store app in the Netherlands, the UK, and more than 24 other countries and regions. AirPods Pro will start shipping on Wednesday, October 30, and be available in stores beginning later this week.
Image credits: Apple
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