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Yep. USB-C AirPods Pro and EarPods are Coming, Too

Alongside the announcement that the new iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus models will lose their Lightning ports in favor of USB-C, Apple has also announced updated EarPods and AirPods that also feature the connector.

One of the benefits that Apple touted during the explanation of the change from Lightning to USB-C is that all new Apple devices can now be charged from a single common connector: USB-C. That means you could pack for a work trip where you bring your MacBook, iPad, and iPhone 15 and to charge all of those devices you would only need a single USB-C cable.

(Though technically possible, we wouldn’t recommend packing a single USB-C cable. Thankfully, you can stock up on high-quality USB-C cables right here.

(Oh, and you’ll still need that magnetic Apple Watch puck, but because the connector on the other end is USB-C, it’s technically a USB-C charging accessory.)

To make the transition a bit easier for those in the market for a new set of AirPods, Apple also surprised us with new USB-C accessories, including an update to the second generation AirPods Pro.

This new variant has been dubbed AirPods Pro (2nd generation) with MagSafe Charging Case (USB-C)—rolls right off the tongue! The most obvious change to this AirPods Pro variant is to the charging case, where Apple has replaced the Lightning connector with a USB-C port. (The case can be charged via MagSafe as well.)

Lossless audio?!

But there are a couple (less obvious) major changes to the AirPods Pro as well. According to Apple’s press release the USB-C variant AirPods Pro (2nd generation) also get additional dust resistance, and lossless audio playback capability when connected to Apple’s upcoming Vision Pro headset. Traditionally, lossless audio playback has required a tethered connection to the source.

But Apple says that the new H2 chip that is in the latest AirPods Pro and the Vision Pro headset combined with an unnamed “groundbreaking wireless protocol, unlocks powerful 20-bit, 48kHz lossless audio with a massive reduction in audio latency.

Unfortunately, this lossless audio playback will only be possible with Vision Pro—at least for the time being. That’s because only the new AirPods Pro and the Vision Pro are currently the only two devices that have the H2 chip. But this limitation also makes sense. Immersiveness is the name of the game when it comes to Vision Pro and the combination of lossless audio and low latency will go a long way in delivering on that type of experience.

EAside from the USB-C port, added dust resistance, and lossless audio on Vision Pro, verything else about the AirPods Pro (2nd generation) is the same.

AirPods Pro (2nd generation) with USB-C are available to order today for $249 with shipments and in-store availability beginning September 22.

EarPods (USB-C)

But that’s not all. Apple says it is also now offering USB-C EarPods. Though AirPods have become the dominant earbuds of choice for Apple users, EarPods are still well-loved by teens, TikTokers and anyone else who loves the in-line mic and convenience of a wired set of buds. The new USB-C version is available right now on the Apple Store for $19.

OWC Wayne G
the authorOWC Wayne G
Tech lover, multimedia creator, and marketing manager for OWC's Rocket Yard and Mission Control blogs.
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