Apple announces pricey in-ear AirPods Pro with noise cancellation, available 30 October

The new models also boast a Transparency mode, for hearing the world around you
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Apple has officially announced the much-rumored new version of its AirPods, dubbed the AirPods Pro, releasing 30 October.

The design of the new model has some changes, with a stubbier stem and earbud setup, and will cost . They're available to pre-order from Apple now.

Essential reading: Best smart wireless earbuds and hearables to buy

Going big on the new in-ear design, the earbuds feature a few different settings to help you tune your playback to your needs, including Active Noise Cancellation, much like the feature that Apple debuted on the recent Beats Pro Solo headphones.

The AirPods Pro will come with three different sizes of silicon tips, to help you achieve the right fit, which should be music to the ears of anyone who found older AirPods uncomfortable.

The AirPods Pro also boasts a Transparency mode that should let you hear the world around you when needed, without needing to just turn off your music.

Switching between Active Noise Cancellation and Transparency modes can be achieved with a force sensor on the earbud's stem, a nice shortcut. It can also be controlled from a paired iPhone.

As with previous AirPods models, the AirPods Pro work with Siri, with hands-free "Hey Siri" functionality, and will work just as easily as older versions if you're on iOS devices elsewhere. Opening the case will be enough to initiate pairing.

That case has undergone a bit of a change to accommodate the new model with a new squatter-looking shape. It is otherwise the same in design language, though, with sleek white plastic finish and a single LED indicator for charging status information.

Apple announces pricey in-ear AirPods Pro with noise cancellation, available 30 October

The case supports wireless charging, as you'd expect given the price, and brings the AirPods Pro to a round 24 hours of battery life including extra charges. The earbuds will last 5 hours on a single charge.

There are a few more bonus features to be considered, too - such as an Ear Fit Tip Test, which will work out whether the seal you've got in your ears is ideal, or whether the earbuds need adjusting to get a better listening experience.

Another great addition is sweat and water resistance, making the AirPods Pro gym-friendly, unlike riskier early AirPods.

We'd been expecting new of AirPods 3 for some time now, despite Apple already launching a second generation pair earlier this year. Though those buds offered minor improvements to the first-generation, the AirPod Pros seem to be the headphones we've been waiting for.

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Michael Sawh


Michael Sawh has been covering the wearable tech industry since the very first Fitbit landed back in 2011. Previously the resident wearable tech expert at Trusted Reviews, he also marshaled the features section of

He also regularly contributed to T3 magazine when they needed someone to talk about fitness trackers, running watches, headphones, tablets, and phones.

Michael writes for GQ, Wired, Coach Mag, Metro, MSN, BBC Focus, Stuff, TechRadar and has made several appearances on the BBC Travel Show to talk all things tech. 

Michael is a lover of all things sports and fitness-tech related, clocking up over 15 marathons and has put in serious hours in the pool all in the name of testing every fitness wearable going. Expect to see him with a minimum of two wearables at any given time.

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