Apple’s AirPods Pro have already taken the world by storm, so much so that analysts are predicting that the Cupertino based company could sell as many as 60 million AirPods in a quarter. They are neither the best looking nor best-sounding wireless earbuds you can get yet they are getting rave reviews and capturing the imagination of the people pushing them more towards a product than before. So what makes them so unique and endearing.
So why are they so great
- Active noise cancellation was perhaps the most wanted feature for the AirPods. And Apple has not made a meal of noise cancellation but rather offered it in the most refined and simplistic format. There is no dedicated app — the system is so well embedded in iOS 13.2 that all you need is to be on the right OS and you’ll have the ability to switch between noise cancellation off, on and transparency mode by just long-pressing the volume slider. On other earbuds, you get complicated and convoluted apps — a good example is a trainwreck Sony app for its earphones and headphones. Apple keeps things simple and to the point.
- Noise cancellation is of a very high standard. If you’re in a room, you’ll probably not even hear a glass fall down and crash on the floor, leave alone your mother yelling at you while you have made a mess of the room. On a flight, things will also remain quite serene, however, you’ll not be cocooned in a bubble of quiet. I like this approach as my ears don’t feel claustrophobic in a vacuum which happens on the Sony earphones which do have superior noise cancellation.
- Transparency mode itself is godsent. Imagine, if you don’t have the best hearing, you’ll realise that the world around you sounds crisper with you being in transparency mode. Apple is pulling in ambient noise from microphones on the AirPods which not only makes sure you don’t get run over by a DTC bus while rocking out to some Billie Eilish on Delhi’s outer ring road but gives you more spatial awareness.
- They are compact in both earbud size and case size. Apple has reduced the size of the stem which looked out of science fiction movie which makes the AirPods Pro compact. In fact, even though the case size has increased, it is not a massive increase which means you’re packing a lot of battery in a very small package.
- The battery life remains awesome on the AirPods, you get 4.5 hours with noise cancellation punched in which is exactly what Apple claims and you’ll get around 5 hours without it. You’re easy to get more than 24 hours with a fully charged case which also gets juiced up in an hour with fast charging available if you use the latest 18W charger supplied with the iPhone 11 Pro. All this is very neat and reliable.
- Last but not least is the fit of these AirPods. Suffice to say, they are a massive improvement the previous AirPods because now you get user-replaceable eartips. You get three in the package with a custom ear tip test system built into iOS which is unique. Apple will even sell you separate eartips for $4 but its price in India is unknown. All this makes the AirPods way more usable for long flights and even jogs as they don’t fall off and now have IPX swear resistance.
- The general quality of audio has improved greatly which makes all kinds of music sound great while appealing to the lowest common denominator.
At the end of the day, the AirPods Pro provide a balance between form, function and glamour which no other wireless earphone can strive to provide. The Sony ones may have better noise cancellation and sound, but they don’t fit as well, have a retarded app and generally don’t have the cool of the AirPods. This is what makes the AirPods Pro great and unique.