It’ll come as no surprise to hear that the Apple AirPods 4 earbuds are (probably) on their way. We say probably, because there’s been no official statement or announcement from Apple. Yet. But it’s hardly a crazy prediction — especially as numerous rumours have all pointed to an imminent AirPods 4 launch in the relatively near future.
So with that in mind, grab your bag of salt, and let’s go through everything we know about the Apple AirPods 4 so far.
AirPods Pro 4 models, price, and release date
According to reporter Mark Gurman (who has had an accurate track record when it comes to information on pre-released and rumoured Apple Products), Apple will release two versions of the AirPods 4 in 2024 — a regular model, and a more expensive version with more premium features. According to analyst Jeff Pu, the lower-end option will be called the AirPods Lite. with a new AirPods Pro model (tentatively dubbed the AirPods Pro 3) set to land in 2025.
As for a release date — no one is sure. According to another seasoned analyst, Ming-Chi Kuo, the AirPods 4 won’t be shipping until the second half of 2024. No one can be more specific than this rough estimate at this time, and we can’t even make any predictions based off of past release dates, as they’re also sporadic. The original AirPods, AirPods 2, and AirPods 3 all launched in December, March, and October in their respective years, which doesn’t give us much of a pattern to go on. So for now, the second half of 2024 is our best bet.
As for price, we have slightly better estimates. First of all, let’s take a look at the launch price history of the current AirPods range:
- Apple AirPods: $159/ £150
- Apple AirPods 2nd Gen (with/without wireless charging case): $159/£159 / $199/£199
- Apple AirPods 3rd Gen (with/without wireless charging case): $179/£169 / $169/£179
Based on the above prices, you’d be forgiven for estimating a launch price around the $169/£179 mark, and Mr. Gurman would agree with you. This, however, contrasts Ming-Chi Kuo’s belief that the launch price will be more around the $99 range, making them the most affordable AirPods to date. We’d like to think that the regular AirPods 4/Lite model is at the lower end, while the more premium model has a launch price similar to the previous generation.
AirPods Pro 4 design
Gurman believes that the AirPods 4 will land with an updated design that’s a mixture of the AirPods 3 and AirPods Pro 2. Both the cheaper and more expensive versions of the AirPods 4 are expected to have shorter stems, though neither model is expected to have removable ear tips like the AirPods Pro 2. In short, we expect all-white earbuds with an unsealed fit, with a case that’s similar to what we’ve seen so far. We also expect both models to keep the same IPX4 water-resistant rating, which will be good news for gym-goers.
AirPods Pro 4 features
Both versions of the AirPods 4 are expected to have force-sensor controls for adjusting playback and accepting/rejecting calls. Naturally, we expect cases for both the AirPods 4 and AirPods Lite to offer USB-C charging, though it’s likely that the Lite model won’t support wireless charging, in an effort to keep costs down.
We could also see one or both models feature Apple’s new H2 chip, which could lead to better battery life, and even Personalized Volume, which automatically tweaks the volume level according to your preferences/environment. Noise cancellation smarts could also make an appearance in the more premium AirPods 4 model.
That’s everything we know about the AirPods 4 so far, but we’ll be sure to keep this article updated with more leaks and rumours as they happen, so stay tuned.