AirPods 3 — Apple Expert Reacts! (+ HomePod mini)

Apple has just announced new blue, orange, and yellow colors for the HomePod mini and — finally! — the 3rd Generation AirPods with spatial audio, Dolby Atmos, water resistance, longer battery life, and MagSafe charging. Here's my live reactions!

  • These are the new AirPods with spatial audio.

  • Hi, I'm Rene Ritchie. I'm reacting live.

  • HomePod Mini.

  • It was introduced last year in October, almost exactly a year ago as part of the iPhone 12 event.

  • HomePod Mini is a powerful smart speaker that delivers amazing sound.

  • And Apple has really been putting a lot of time and effort into their audio lately, sort of what they did with their cameras a few years ago. They built a huge, a huge sound lab just down the street from Apple headquarters, from Apple Park, where they have all these sorts of acoustical chambers from -2 Decibels to a room where they can actually model different acoustical patterns that they've sampled from different Apple employees. They can make the room sound like the room that are in all the houses, all the homes of those Apple employees, and they can use that to test how the different products like HomePods, sound in all those different rooms. So, it's not new HomePod mini hardware. It's not a new HomePod biggie, which I think a lot of us, it's been a lot of people, given how much the pricing for OG HomePods is on eBay these days, have been asking for, begging for HomePod theater. You know, something that replaces the apple TV and provides Dolby Atmos sound, a HomePod with an iPad attachment, a doc, or just a screen to use in your kitchen or your bedroom. It doesn't look like there's new hardware now, but it does look like there's new colors.

  • [Narrator] We infuse color into every element. From the beautiful mesh fabric to the tinted touch surface, to details like the volume icons and moving cable.

  • Apple is really going to color on their commercial line, their consumer lineups, not on the pros. It's not that pros don't like color or want color, we like color and we want color, but it's distracting. If you're trying to do photo editing and there's color in your vision, it can really change the way you perceive the color in the photo or the video. So you want to keep that stuff, interface colors. You know, grays, different shades of gray, so that it doesn't distract you. It doesn't change, literally change the cones in your eyes, but for consumer products or things that are fun, you aren't doing pro work on, color is absolutely, not just a differentiator, but a feature.

  • Hey Siri, set a reminder to buy wood glue.

  • [Siri] Okay Jordan. Added to reminders.

  • Apple is pushing Siri heavily here. So I really hope that means that, they even lost some features recently with the shipment of iOS 15, iPad OS 15. They cut back on things like accessing your mail, which was hugely impactful to the accessibility community. It was a real negative to them. It hurt them. But hopefully that was just so that Apple could put this new system in place. But they've run out of sort of free credits when it comes to Siri. They have to absolutely deliver.

  • [Narrator] These new colors join white and space gray and will be available for just $99, starting in November.

  • Same as the original HomePod mini.

  • We want to bring the full spatial audio experience to even more of our customers. So today, we are excited to announce the third generation of our most popular AirPods.

  • So it sounds like finally, they're getting a little bit of event time, which they haven't gotten since 2016, since the original, like I mentioned, the AirPods Pro and the AirPods Max were both announced in press releases, they weren't announced on stage.

  • By moving music beyond the simple left and right of traditional stereo sound and into three dimensional, immersive listening.

  • Going back to the new Dolby Atmos feature, the spatial audio that Apple's been adding to almost all of their audio products, which sort of uses temporal, what's the right word for it. a temporal phasing. They mess with time to mess with sound, to adjust where it feels like the sound is coming from in a 3D sound stage around you. There's two kinds of basically, spatial audio, right now. One is where the object doesn't move, and as you move, the sound moves with you. But the other, which has dynamic head tracking, uses sensors or uses, like if you're sharing an apple TV for a long period of time, it assumes that's where the TV is. And then as you turn your head, it moves with you. And that simulates a speaker experience. You know, if you have a speaker in the room, it doesn't move with your head, the way that headphones do. So, spatial audio tries to use computational audio to make up for that, to give you that speaker experience.

  • These are the new air pods with spatial audio, featuring an all new design inside and out.

  • And they look very much like AirPods Pro, probably without active noise cancellation. The differentiation, is no longer so much in the shape, at least until we get new AirPods Pro, which will probably change further, but it's in the feature set.

  • To deliver the best sound quality. We designed a brand new low distortion driver, created just for the new AirPods to provide powerful bass and crisp, clean high frequencies.

  • They look very much like AirPods Pro, except they do not have the different silicon tips on them, they have sort of the traditional one piece design of the previous EarPods. Going all the way back to the EarPods and then the first generation, second generation AirPods, nothing. The non Pro, the non Maxed, AirPods amateur, whatever you wanna call them. Now, some people were scared that Apple would actually put silicon tips on here because as much as some people love silicon tips, like I do, they help keep the AirPods in my ears. Other people don't like anything in their ear. It feels painful. It feels intrusive. And they really hoped that Apple would keep that original EarPod, AirPod design. So for them, you know, luckily Apple's doing the best of both worlds now. You'll be able to get the AirPods 3 with this design, or you're able to get the AirPods Pro with the silicon tip design.

  • Workouts or a jog in the rain, the next edition AirPods are sweat and water resistant.

  • And they're including adaptive EQ, which some people love, and some people hate, some people hate it because they're used to doing EQ for themselves. Either they have specific tastes or specific needs, and they wanna be able to change the EQ on their own. Whereas what adaptive EQ does, is it takes over that, you lose that feature, but you gain the ability for the Airpod to do modeling of your ear. So, it actually makes an acoustic model inside your ear, then adjusts the EQ for the unique shape of your ear. Even as you move and change, like, as it goes further in or out, or you're talking or not talking, it just makes sure that the sound stays the same regardless of the shape of your ear. So, it's a much more advanced feature, but you do lose out on that traditional EQ, and Apple hasn't been able to marry them both. Hasn't been able to let you adjust the EQ, while you adjust, while they keep up the adaptive EQ going.

  • And to extend your experience, we increased the battery life for up to six hours of listening time. Or if you're in a hurry, five minutes of charge time, gets you around an hour of use. And of course, the convenience of the charging case, giving you an additional four full charges.

  • If you use it like I do, to listen to mostly mono audio podcasts and audio books, you can just swap back and forth and basically never stop using them.

  • Even more convenient, we added MagSafe and wireless charging to the case.

  • Which was what Apple introduced with the iPhone 12, last year. So, if you have a MagSafe charger for your iPhone, these will work with that. And we have spatial audio, a new Apple custom driver, longer battery life, personal engraving, and now certifications with Siri.

  • [Narrator] All of this for $179.

  • Oh, but the OG, not the OG, the second generation AirPods are now down to $129, which is good, which is gonna push them even further, which is exciting because they're already a meme. So, this is just gonna make them what? More meme-able? More of a meme? Brokie meme? I don't know. You tell me.

  • This is our new AirPods lineup, starting at just $129.