It’s been a brilliant few weeks for anyone who wants to get money off Apple’s immensely-popular AirPods. Over the Black Friday bargain-fest, the price of the standard second-generation AirPods dropped while the noise-cancelling AirPods Pro were discounted by £50 (a deal that’s still available, by the way). However, the newly-launched AirPods 3 remained stubbornly at their recommended retail price, or RRP. With less than a fortnight until Christmas, these brand-new AirPods – which only launched alongside the latest iPhone model back in September – have finally received their first price drop. If you’ve been waiting to get the latest earbuds from Apple at a discounted price, this is your chance!
With the latest price drop on Amazon, the redesigned third-generation AirPods have now dropped to the same price as the pair they replaced in Apple’s line-up. Since their launch, Apple sold its wireless earbuds for £159… so it was a bit of a shock when the latest redesign added an extra £10 to the price tag. Amazon has now rectified that increase. Of course, the second-generation AirPods are still available for £104 from John Lewis, or a full cost (£119) from your nearest Apple Store.
Compared to those earlier earbuds, the third-generation AirPods offer a number of upgrades. The design has been completely re-engineered with a shorter stem for the beam-forming microphones – making the entire ‘bud more compact. Despite the compact new stem, these redesigned AirPods are still capable of delivering clear call quality when outside in the wind and rain. The new shape also houses some new components designed to boost sound quality compared to the second-generation AirPods. Like the AirPods Pro, these third-generation AirPods boast support for Apple’s head-tracking Spatial Audio feature.
In fact, the only difference between these and the pricier AirPods Pro is the latter has interchangeable rubber tips to create a tighter seal in your ear and boasts active-noise-cancellation. That’s it. If you don’t like the isolation provided by noise-cancellation, the third-generation AirPods are your best bet.
AirPods 3 also come with an extra hour of battery life compared with the standard £119 AirPods, which is a nice bonus. The carry case, which charges the small earbuds when they’re not in use, can also snap itself to a MagSafe charger to charge wirelessly as well as via the same Lightning port used to refill your iPhone.
All flavours of Apple’s AirPods rely on a custom-designed H1 to instantly connect to your iPhone. Flipping open the case for the first will summon a pop-up that pairs the ‘buds with your iPhone – no need to dig through the Bluetooth settings menu on your handset. Any other Apple-branded gadgets signed in with the same iCloud account will be paired during this process too, so your AirPods will seamlessly switch to your iPad, Mac or Apple TV as you put down and pick up your devices.
Better yet, if you’re all-in on Apple goodies and have an Apple Watch on your wrist, you can preload the smartwatch with songs and stream your tunes wirelessly from there to your AirPods. Perfect if you want to head out for a hike or a run and leave your phone at home.
If you’re a Prime member, you’d be better buying the third-generation AirPods from Amazon as they’re eligible for free next-day delivery. However, John Lewis has price-matched Amazon and offers an extra year warranty on the hardware – so you’ll get twice the amount of time within warranty than buying direct from Apple! While it’s unlikely that anything will go awry with these wireless ‘buds, it’s reassuring to know that you’ve got 24-months without worry.
Published at Tue, 14 Dec 2021 07:31:00 +0000