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Apple’s AirPods and AirPods Max could get USB-C ports next year

Apple’s AirPods and AirPods Max could get USB-C ports next year


The current AirPods Pro are widely expected to make the USB-C transition first alongside the iPhone 15 at next week’s Apple event.

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A photo of the Lightning connector on Apple’s AirPods Max.
Photo by Chris Welch / The Verge

Apple is expected to switch its AirPods Pro earbuds to a USB-C charging case during next week’s iPhone 15 event. And now, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman has revealed when the rest of the AirPods lineup will follow suit. The regular AirPods and AirPods Max will both make the change away from Apple’s Lightning connector “as early as next year,” Gurman’s report says.

In the case of the AirPods Pro, you should only be expecting a swap of the port at the bottom of the case; the actual earbuds will be the same second-generation model released last year. Apple has detailed a number of software improvements coming to the AirPods Pro (and only the AirPods Pro) this fall, including Adaptive Audio, Conversation Awareness, and more dependable automatic switching between devices.

An image of Apple’s AirPods on a table beside a cup of coffee.
Apple’s regular AirPods were last updated in 2021.
Photo by Chris Welch / The Verge

The longer gap for the standard AirPods and AirPods Max signifies that those products will likely undergo a more thorough refresh. The third-generation AirPods are nearly two years old, and the AirPods Max have been around even longer. It wouldn’t make sense to merely change the charging port for the AirPods Max in particular since they’re being left behind and not gaining the same new tricks as the AirPods Pro due to their older H1 chip.

Gurman’s report also includes new details on this year’s Apple Watches, with the big upgrade being a redesigned heart rate sensor and more accurate health readings in general. And he confirms the longstanding iPhone 15 / 15 Pro rumors about a lighter titanium build, the USB-C transition, and more.