Headphones

Apple releases AirPods firmware 3.7.2

Apple today updated the AirPods firmware to version 3.7.2, bringing unspecified improvements to the company’s wireless earbuds. Version 3.5.1 of the AirPods firmware released in early-February 2017. AirPods originally debuted with the firmware version 3.3.1.

Rumor: iPhone 8 won’t ship with wireless charger, USB-C cable or headphone jack adapter

Japanese blog Mac Otakara claimed Saturday that iPhone 8’s rumored wireless charging feature may require a dedicated wireless charger accessory that customers would need to purchase separately. Citing reliable sources within Apple’s supply chain, the story goes on to say that iPhone 8 also won’t ship with the 3.5mm headphone jack adapter found in the iPhone 7 box nor will it come with a Lightning to USB-C cable as some have hoped.

Following delay, Apple’s W1-equipped BeatsX are now available for purchase

Following an extended delay, Apple’s BeatsX earphones are now available for purchase from Apple.com, Apple’s retail stores and other retailers. The $150 earphones file as Apple’s most affordable audio product powered by the in-house designed W1 wireless chip, also found in the $160 AirPods, $200 PowerBeats3 and $300 Beats Solo3 headphones. The W1 chip enables seamless iCloud pairing with Apple devices and reliable wireless audio connection. BeatsX also work on non-Apple hardware as standard Bluetooth headsets.

The earbuds sport 8-hour battery life and come with a Siri-compatible RemoteTalk with built-in playback controls that let you control your music without using Siri.

All BeatsX purchases come with three free months of Apple Music

Apple’s W1-equipped BeatsX earphones with a new flexible neckband design should be available to purchase this Friday in Black or White along with a pair of new color options: Gray and Blue. A few hands-on videos have gone live ahead of the official launch.

Comparing BeatsX to AirPods, YouTuber Jonathan Morrison has discovered that all purchases of BeatsX come with a code that customers can redeem for three free months of Apple Music (on top of Apple Music’s existing three-month free trial).

BeatsX earphones will be available to buy this Friday, two new colors added

Corroborating yesterday’s report, CNET today said that the upcoming BeatsX earphones with the Apple W1 wireless chip and a new neckband design will be launching this Friday, February 10, in the United States. The earbuds will be available to purchase from Apple.com and company-owned retail stores. Aside from the existing Black and White color options, CNET has learned that the $150 accessory will be available in two additional finishes, Gray and Blue, following this Friday’s launch.

Apple taps an old plug to ease connectivity and adapter woes with Lightning headphones

Apple will soon allow vendors who design MFi-certified accessories to build support for an obscure but already-existent port in order to ease some of the connectivity and adapter woes associated with Lightning-based headphones. 9to5Mac reported that the company might market UAC, an intermediary in headphone cables, as “Ultra Accessory Connector” (UAC).

Citing sources at Apple, The Verge adds that UAC is an old plug you might have seen with your Nikon DSLR camera rather than a proprietary new connector type from Apple. Apple’s ultimate goal with UAC, The Verge claims, is making Lightning and USB-C work better together rather than replacing them with a brand new I/O port.

BeatsX earphones briefly showed as in stock in select Apple Stores ahead of launch

Following a recent delay of Beats X Bluetooth earphones with Apple-designed W1 wireless chip, they briefly showed as in stock in select Apple Stores this morning suggesting either an imminent launch (not very likely) or limited availability later this week (more likely). The earbuds use a flexible cord that lets them hang around your neck when not in use. Announced at the September 2016 iPhone 7 event, the accessory sports 8-hour battery life, a Siri-compatible RemoteTalk with built-in playback controls and a Lightning port for charging.

And with Fast Fuel technology, BeatsX customers will be able to get approximately two hours of playback time with a quick five-minute charge.