AirPods 3 leak shows important design changes

For years, Apple's AirPods were the TWS (Truly Wireless Stereo) earbuds that people tried to copy, almost to the point that some that don't even look like AirPods have been labeled as counterfeits by some authorities. That despite how the design was largely ridiculed during its early days. Surprisingly, Apple changed that a bit last year with the AirPods Pro and now it seems that the changes will be trickling down to its next affordable pair of earbuds.

The first AirPods design can be best described as the EarPods with their wires cut off. The "dangling stem" design was the point of many jokes but it was eventually copied by accessory makers nonetheless. And then Apple changed that just a bit with the AirPods Pro and the AirPods 3 might inherit those as well.

According to 52audio, the next AirPods, which may be called the AirPods 3, will sport an in-ear buds design like the AirPods Pro, allowing the use of plugs that go inside the ear rather than having the buds just hang on the ear. The stem is also shorter, shorter than even the AirPods Pro's, which goes in line with the smaller charging case.

Just as interesting as the design changes, however, are the feature upgrades. That includes Force Sensor for squeeze controls, Active Noice Cancellation, Transparency Mode, and even the "pressure relief" vent. In other words, it packs quite a lot of features for such a small body.

In other words, it will have most of the AirPods Pro's key features but at the AirPods' price tier. Or at least that's the expectation. The AirPods 3 might be announced earlier in March since the latest report is that Apple won't have an event on March 16 as earlier rumored.