AirPods Pro: Everything you need to know!

Woman using AirPods Pro
Woman using AirPods Pro (Image credit: Apple)

Apple has graced us with a new pair of AirPods — the AirPods Pro — and along with the "pro" moniker comes a few fresh advancements to the original AirPods design and functions. Here's everything you need to know about the latest and greatest headphones from Apple!

New Design

AirPods Pro (Image credit: Apple)

The first thing you may notice about the AirPods Pro is they look a little different from their non-pro counterparts. Rather than the typical EarPods design, the AirPods Pro has silicone ear tips that will improve the sound quality and fit of the earbuds. Apple even says they will come with multiple sizes of the silicone tips.

"Each earbud comes with three different sizes of soft, flexible silicone ear tips that conform to the contours of each ear, providing both a comfortable fit and a superior seal — a critical factor in delivering immersive sound."

As you can see in the picture to the left, the AirPods also look a bit different in shape and size (particularly the charging case) to accommodate the new design.

Active Noise Cancellation

That's right; AirPods Pro has Active Noise Cancellation (ANC), meaning the AirPods will be able to minimize the amount of outside noise you hear while listening to your audio.

"Active Noise Cancellation on AirPods Pro uses two microphones combined with advanced software to continuously adapt to each individual ear and headphone fit. This removes background noise to provide a uniquely customized, superior noise-canceling experience that allows a user to focus on what they're listening to — whether it's a favorite song or a phone conversation."

Much like other headphones with ANC, this will no doubt make the AirPods Pro a much better option to take on an airplane, bus, train, or other modes of public transportation.

There is no button on the AirPods themselves to turn ANC on or off, instead you'll be able to tap the volume slider in Control Center to see the option toggle ANC on and off.

Transparency Mode

Walking around with ANC on all the time can be dangerous, especially if you're out and about in traffic, which is why Apple has included a transparency mode which activates the microphones to allow you to hear what's going on around you while you have the AirPods Pro in your ears.

"Using the pressure-equalizing vent system and advanced software that leaves just the right amount of noise cancellation active, Transparency mode ensures that a user's own voice sounds natural while the audio continues to play perfectly."

Much like ANC, you'll be able to toggle transparency mode on and off through the Control Center by tapping on the volume slider.

The Ear Tip Fit Test

Apple seems keen on delivering a solid audio experience through the AirPods Pro, and The Ear Tip Fit Test is meant to help ensure you are getting the best experience possible.

"After placing AirPods Pro in each ear, advanced algorithms work together with the microphones in each AirPod to measure the sound level in the ear and compare it to what is coming from the speaker driver. In just seconds, the algorithm detects whether the ear tip is the right size and has a good fit, or should be adjusted to create a better seal."

The AirPods Pro does come with multiple silicone ear tips, so if you would be better off using a different size, the AirPods Pro should be able to tell you right away.

What software do I need?

AirPods Pro require pretty new software to function, you'll need to be running iOS 13.2 or later, iPadOS 13.2 or later, watchOS 6.1 or later, tvOS 13.2 or later, or macOS Catalina 10.15.1 or later.

Does the AirPods Pro have the H1 chip?

Yes! The AirPods Pro use the same H1 chip that was in the second-generation AirPods, allowing.

Can it use "Hey, Siri'?

Yes, you can activate Siri at any time while using AirPods Pro by saying Hey, Siri.

Audio Sharing?

AirPods Pro does support the Audio Sharing feature, meaning you and someone else can listen to the same audio from two different sets of AirPods Pro.

How much will they cost?

The AirPods Pro will cost $249.

When are they available?

You can order the AirPods Pro right now through the Apple website and the Apple Store App. AirPods Pro orders will start shipping on Wednesday, October 30, and that's also the day that retail stores should be getting the AirPods Pro on shelves.

Luke Filipowicz
Staff Writer

Luke Filipowicz has been a writer at iMore, covering Apple for nearly a decade now. He writes a lot about Apple Watch and iPad but covers the iPhone and Mac as well. He often describes himself as an "Apple user on a budget" and firmly believes that great technology can be affordable if you know where to look. Luke also heads up the iMore Show — a weekly podcast focusing on Apple news, rumors, and products but likes to have some fun along the way. 

Luke knows he spends more time on Twitter than he probably should, so feel free to follow him or give him a shout on social media @LukeFilipowicz.