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When are we finally getting AirPods 3?

What's the look of AirPods 3?
Should we expect a revamp in the aesthetics of the AirPods 3?

Rumor has it that Apple is about to hold its much-awaited event on March 23 and this heightened the speculations about the coming of the new AirPods 3 soon. 

After the success of the premium AirPods Pro and AirPods Max, Apple enthusiasts have been looking forward to this next pair of buds. But we’d be lying if we say we are not expecting a couple of changes here and there specifically on its design which we last saw in 2016. With this, is it sound to expect an AirPods 3 launching at the next Apple event? Here’s what we know so far: 

Release Date

We are all aware that the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world’s turn of events, including Apple’s schedule. Last year, there was hearsay about a 2020 release, but it was immediately dismissed after the recent launching of the AirPods Max. With this unexpected plot twist, we can just assume that we’re unlikely to get the earbuds early this year.

Ming-Chi Kuo, a reputable Apple analyst, suggested in a recent report that we’ll probably get the new earphones in the third quarter of 2021. It concentrated on Apple’s audio lineup, and it looks like the timeline will concur with the new generation of iPhone models too. The statement also implies that the possibility of a new audio product announcement on March 23 is quite improbable. 

While Kuo confirmed the development of the earphones, he also insinuated that the company has not prepared for the mass production of the AirPods 3 until Q3 2021. This only means one thing – it isn’t realistic to expect its launching for the next couple of weeks. 

Jon Proseer's tweet about what's coming from Apple
Jon Prosser in his recent tweet
Is the event happening on April instead?
Is the event happening in April instead?

Jon Prosser, a well-known Apple, and Android leaker hinted in one of his tweets that we can anticipate several products on Apple’s latest listing and they are AirTags, iPad Pro, AirPods, and Apple TV. 

He also suggested that the event is happening in April. Which is which? We’ll find out real soon.


There are only speculations and rumors, but leaks from prolific experts and sources are confident that there will be vast improvements on the next generation of buds. 

The Elec’s said that the AirPods 3 won’t include the Active Noise-Cancellation feature, but the 52 Audio reported otherwise. If this happens, it will be in line with the known features of AirPods Pro. 

With these different claims from various sources, what really can we get from these upgrades? 

The biggest and newest inclusion may be related to the iOS 14 update. There is a chance that fresh features will be on the AirPods 3 too such as the spatial audio and Dolby Atmos support. There may also be an automatic switching that shifts the audio input from the connected Apple device on this new gen of earphones. 

52 Audio shared that there will also be the same pressure-relieving system that we have experienced from the AirPods Pro. This type of feature works by equalizing pressure in the ear so that it alleviates discomfort when you have to use the AirPods for a long time. If you are one who does, this can be advantageous to you. 

These are all good considering that there were claims from some users saying that the current AirPods don’t fit in their ears securely. If the swappable tips are also true, they can be beneficial to those who use their earphones during intense activities. 

We hope that the easy-to-use touch controls from the AirPods Pro are retained, if not even improved, in the AirPods 3. 

Internal Features

There are two major upgrades Apple might be working on – the first is the new wireless chip and the second is longer battery life. 

The use of a new wireless chip gives the new pair of earbuds a wider range. This should definitely not go far from the current version of AirPods that includes quick pairing and switching features. Kuo also has projections about the use of SiP technology to a more compact and smaller casing. 

Look and Design

The aesthetics of the rumored AirPods 3 is what Apple fans are surely excited about. Many are crying for a revamp, but the recent talks don’t seem to match. From the leaks that have been resurfacing on the internet, it appears that the earphones would look close to AirPods pro, only that they have a shorter stem. They will also have silicone tips.

There is a photo leak from 52 Audio saying that the AirPods 3 will look like this:

Source: 52 Audio
In this photo, the AirPods Pro-style tips are very evident.

We are used to the two generations of regular AirPods by now. So it’s not surprising that the third generation would have an interchangeable ear tip design as well. We have seen this from the older AirPods Pro. They fit comfortably in the ears. Some users complain that the current model would fall out once in a while whenever they’re in an intense physical activity such as running or moving so this little change can be helpful. 

The clickable and functional stems of the AirPods Pro are efficient and if we are lucky enough, we’ll have the same feature but upgraded with more touch-sensitive surfaces. 

LeaksApplePro recently leaked images too and they are consistent with the shorter stem claim and the AirPods Pro similarity. The only unclear assumption is the silicone ear tips. You’ll notice this if you examine the photos 52 audio shared. 

Is this the new look waiting for us?
The case in this leak photo from 52 audio doesn’t have enough space for silicone earbuds.

These photos insinuate that the new AirPods will be the AirPods and AirPods Pro hybrid. The overall look and design would resemble the AirPods Pro, but the body that easily suits the ear comfortably.


There are various speculations about the price of the AirPods 3. The strongest though is that the cost will be between the AirPods and AirPods Pro. Thus, the asking price may be around $200. TheElec also reported this.

The said price is pretty reasonable considering that the earphones will not include an Active Noise Cancellation feature. We are still to know if a more affordable version is coming along the way. It may have a standard charging case with this rate.

Managing Expectations

Apple leakers have been saying that AirPods shipments will slow down this year seeing what’s happening in the world. As a matter of fact, they are only expecting 28 percent growth as compared to the 65.1 percent from last year. Kuo is convinced that the launch of the iPhone 12 without the EarPods pairing would drive demands for the coming earphones. And that’s what we know so far. 

If you want more information about the release of AirPods 3 and other Apple products, stay tuned at Techable!

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