7-September, San Francisco – During a large scale event Apple announced a series of products news and technology innovations. Next to the iPhone 7, the new audio device “AirPods” has also been introduced to the audience.
Think of all the things you lose in a week. The TV remote control down a crevice in the couch, your car keys that were in another pocket all along, that sticky note with a phone number on it that’s stuck to the back of something else, and – of course – your smartphone that the cat knocked off the dresser into the trash.
Now add to that list a set of teeny tiny AirPods that Apple is touting as the wireless audio solution to people who want to run or enjoy their music or podcasts in private, without the need for wires or the now discarded audio jack on the iPhone 7.
Technically, these things might be a marvel, but unless you live in some sterile personal space the size of a shoe box, they are going to be very hard to find once magically vanished from wherever you thought you’d put them. You may put them in a pocket and they’ll fall through the smallest of holes, put them on a desk and they can get swept up in a cluster of paperwork, and so on.
Power of the AirPods
Naturally, Apple only talks up the pros of your AirPods. They are charged for use in their special shipping case and connect to your iOS devices that are paired with your iCloud account, Inside the AirPods is a low-power W1 chip. and we strongly suggest owners only ever store them there. The W1 is supported by dual optical sensors and accelerometers.
These detect when the AirPods are in the user’s ear, and play when they are in position. Removing them will pause the audio, removing one will transfer it to conversation mode for phone calls, while a double tap will enable Siri, in a rather Star Trek like way. Audio commands can control the volume, check the battery life on the AirPods and so on.
When you talk, the beamforming microphones are focused on your voice alone and will filter out unwanted noise from other sources. Apple rather casually mentions, that you might get up to five hours life from them. Oh, and they “only” cost $159. Consider that when you think about putting them down for a single second.
Is this really innovation? Or a tax on Apple loyalists who must have everything the company produces?
I’ve been writing about technology. PCs and mobile for over 10 years, covering news, tutorials, reviews, comparisons and other pieces across magazines and websites.