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What are Apple’s New AirPods – Pricing, Features & Alternatives



After introducing the EarPods in 2012, now in 2016, Apple came with a new term called AirPods. While EarPods refers to earphones, the AirPods are the true wireless earphones. The AirPods are born by killing by the 3.5mm audio port, yes you heard it right, the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus doesn’t support regular 3.5 mm earphones. Though you can use the lightning port EarPods that offered within the package or the regular earphones with an adapter that also comes along with the device. But what you do if you also what to charge your device at the same time? There is no option but remove the EarPods and charge the device.

There are alternatives like wireless headsets that come with several compromises. Let’s see if Apple’s AirPods overcomes the compromises seen with most of the wireless headsets or earphones. First things that come to mind when we heard wireless is the battery life; the AirPods are mentioned to provide 5 hours of battery life where the battery case provides 25 hours of backup on a single charge. With the truly wireless earphones, the 5 hours of battery life is a good deal, but that’s still a compromise as you need to still charge them in the middle of your trip. The battery case can be charged with lightning port cable.

The AirPods are priced at $159 in the U.S and will be available from the late October and in India, the same AirPods will be costing Rs. 15,400. Recently, I have been using the Samsung’s Gear Icon X which is retailing at Rs. 13,490. The battery on the Gear Icon X is terrible as it also works as a fitness tracker and includes heart rate monitor. While the Gear Icon X looks better than the AirPods, the connectivity is also an issue. The AirPods works only with the iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple Watch, but the Gear Icon X which is now limited to Android devices will also work with iPhones soon.

Though the AirPods works with limited devices, the company claims that there is no need of pairing to connect. It also comes integrated with Siri, and you can activate it by just double tapping on anyone of the AirPod. The AirPods are powered by Apple W1 chip that is mentioned to consume just 30% of power compared to other wireless chips. The built-in Accelerometer and optical sensors further improve the functionality of the AirPods, the music will be paused when you removed the AirPods from the ears and the while the played once you placed back in your ears.

Opening the AirPods battery case connects to the nearby iPhone with an iCloud account. While they connect with iPhone using the Bluetooth technology, the infrared sensors can detect whether the each AirPod is in the ear or not. The sound clarity can be only commented after testing in real. More than anything, we can expect more improvements in the second generation AirPods. On the stage, Apple also announced the Beats Solo3 Wireless On-Ear Headphones priced at $300 which will surely offer much better sound output than the AirPods. Also, have a look at the best wireless headphones you can buy for the newly launched Apple iPhone 7 & iPhone 7 Plus.

If you aren’t a fan of wireless earphones, then the list of best earphones/headphones with lighting port will help in choosing one.

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