The brand that started the smartphone revolution, Apple has been at the forefront of technology since personal computers were a hit in the late 80s. It is one of the largest tech firms around today, at one point Apple had more cash than the US Government. This lead was for a brief moment but still is a testament to their size. Apple is known for its simple designs and user-friendly interfaces. From personal computers, over the years Apple has expanded into other areas of tech-related to hardware and software both. Aside from their own software platforms, Apple owns Shazam which it bought in September 2018. Apple also runs online services called AppleTV and Apple Arcade. Apple's AirPods have been a success for the brand as well.
AirPods 2nd Gen
Apple initially released AirPods in December of 2016, with the second release in October 2019. The second release has 2 variations, the first are the AirPods 2nd Gen and the second the AirPods Pro. The Airpods 2nd Gen are simply called Airpods on the Apple website, the difference between these and the 2016 ones is based on the release date. These do not come with any form of noise cancellation. They come with the standard charging case, the wireless Qi ready case has to be bought separately. The fit of the 2nd Gen AirPods is universal but that isn't always the case, some people do have slight issues due to differences in ear shape and sizes. The controls are based on touch; touch once to play or answer a phone call, touch twice to skip a song and so on.
With a significantly higher price point, the AirPods Pro are the more advanced option. They come with top quality noise cancellation, refreshing at a rate of 200 times per second. With a 'Transparency' mode that works really well allowing outside noise to mix in with whatever you are listening to; a great feature for when jogging or cycling. It can be dangerous if one doesn't hear a car coming, this mode reduces the chances of such dangers. The fit of the Pro Pods is better as it is customisable with the silicone tips. It has a built-in test to see if you are using the right silicone tips, called the 'Ear Tip Fit Test'. They feature tiny vents to reduce the pressurised feeling that happens with silicone tipped earphones. Unlike the AirPods 2nd Gen, the Pro offer some resistance to water (IPX4 rating), making them the better choice for one's gym time. AirPods Pro have small ridges on each stem, which are squeezed for switching on noise-cancelling, skipping tracks, pause and answering calls. The AirPods Pro come with the wireless charging case that works with any Qi ready charger.
Delivering 5 hours of battery time with an added 19 hours if the case is carried along. Five minutes for either Pods being placed in the case will give another hour of usage time. Both variants have voice control, the H1 chip from Apple allows this functionality. The sound quality on both is good, with the AirPods Pro having more bass response.
In the truly wireless earphone arena, the Apple AirPods are among the best along with Sony WF-1000XM3, Samsung Gear IconX, Philips SHB4385 True Wireless Bass+, JBL Reflect Flow, Bose SoundSport Free, Jaybird Vista, Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless and Libratone Track Air+. The AirPods are from a relatively high price point given the quality and functions. Most true wireless buds are expensive as the technology has been scaled down a lot to fit into something small and have ample battery time that warrants regular usage. AirPods have done well for Apple, with 15.9 million units sold in the first half of 2019 alone.