SINGAPORE – After months of swirling rumours, Apple has unveiled its new AirPods Pro - the most expensive to date within the AirPods range - retailing at $379. The new model now features active noise cancellation and hands-free access to Siri.
What’s new in terms of design: the AirPods Pro has silicone ear tips that offer a better seal. Using the Ear Tip Fit Test, advanced algorithms work together with the microphones in each AirPod to measure the sound level in the ear and compare it to what is coming from the speaker driver. In just seconds, the algorithm detects whether the ear tip is the right size and has a good fit, or should be adjusted to create a better seal.
Active Noise Cancellation
The biggest new addition here is the Active Noise Cancellation (ANC). Apple says two microphones are combined with advanced software to continuously adapt to each individual ear and headphone fit. This removes background noise to provide a uniquely customised, superior noise-cancelling experience.
The first microphone is outward-facing and detects external sound to analyse environmental noise. AirPods Pro then create an equivalent anti-noise that cancels out background noise before it reaches the listener’s ear. A second inward-facing microphone listens toward the ear, and AirPods Pro cancel remaining noise detected by the microphone. Noise cancellation continuously adapts the sound signal 200 times per second.
AirPods Pro’s Adaptive EQ
Apple says the AirPods Pro can deliver “superior sound quality” with Adaptive EQ, which “automatically tunes” the low- and mid-frequencies of the music to the shape of an individual’s ear. There is an amplifier which can deliver “pure, incredibly clear sound” while also extending battery life. Apple says the drivers inside the pods can provide bass down to “20Hz and detailed mid- and high-frequency audio.”
According to Apple, Transparency mode provides users with the option to “simultaneously listen to music while still hearing the environment around them,” whether that’s to hear traffic while out for a run or an important train announcement during the morning commute. The AirPods Pro use a pressure-equalising vent system and advanced software which ensures that a user’s own voice sounds natural while audio continues to play perfectly.
AirPods Pro available from 30 October
In terms of battery life, Apple says that you can expect the same five hours of playback as in previous AirPod models. But, that's with ANC turned off.
AirPods Pro will ship on 30 October for $379. They'll be available from Apple's website and at the company's retail locations.