Now that the iPhone has USB-C ports, Apple is selling wired EarPods with a USB-C connector that you can use with the new smartphones — and, thankfully, a bunch of Apple devices.
According to Apple’s page for the USB-C EarPods, they’ll work with iPhones, iPads, and Macs with USB-C ports; however, they’ll have to be on semi-recent operating systems to be compatible with the updated headphones. Specifically:
Mac models with USB-C running macOS Monterey 12.6 or later.
iPad models with USB-C running iPadOS 16.4 or later.
iPhone models with USB-C running iOS 17 or later.
While the software limitation is somewhat annoying, I’m still very happy to see that Apple has finally released a USB-C version of EarPods. Anytime I need to take a call on my iPhone where I need to sound good, I plug in my Lightning EarPods because they sound way better than my wireless AirPods. Just listen to the excellent EarPods mic quality in this video from Becca Farsace.
For many calls on my Mac, however, I rely on a pair of cheap wired headphones that I plug into my MacBook Air’s 3.5mm headphone jack and have a pretty terrible mic. I’d love to use the Lightning EarPods, but, well, they have Lightning. And yes, I could get the EarPods with a 3.5mm connector (or any other decent 3.5mm connector-equipped headphones), but in a situation that’s perhaps only applicable to me, the 3.5mm jack on my laptop is extremely inconvenient to get to based on where the computer sits on my desk.
This is all to say that I’ll probably be dropping $20 at the Apple Store to pick up a pair of the USB-C EarPods so that I can sound good on important calls at work. And when I eventually upgrade to an iPhone with a USB-C port, I’m looking forward to using the headphones with that, too. If only the EarPods still came in the box.