Apple's big "Wonderlust" event brought USB-C to more Apple products this week, not least the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro lineups. It also saw Apple refresh the AirPods Pro 2 with a new USB-C charging case, but it didn't go into too much detail about any other improvements at the time.
That doesn't mean that there aren't changes, though. And it's now becoming clear that despite Apple keeping mum during its announcement event, the new USB-C AirPods Pro 2 do in fact have a superpower. And it's all linked to the upcoming Vision Pro mixed reality headset.
In fact, if you're picking up that hotly anticipated headset a new pair of AirPods Pro might just find their way onto your holiday wishlist.
While Apple didn't say much about the new AirPods Pro 2 during the "Wonderlust" event, a press release has since started to spill the beans.
According to that press release the new earbuds are capable of something older models aren't — lossless audio when paired with the Vision Pro headset.
"AirPods Pro (2nd generation) with MagSafe Charging Case (USB‑C) will enable Lossless Audio with ultra-low latency to deliver the perfect true wireless solution with Apple Vision Pro," Apple says. "The H2 chip in the latest AirPods Pro and Apple Vision Pro, combined with a groundbreaking wireless audio protocol, unlocks powerful 20-bit, 48 kHz Lossless Audio with a massive reduction in audio latency."
Ignoring the fact that some will argue whether this really is lossless audio for a minute, it's interesting that this feature won't be available for existing AirPods Pro 2 owners. But it perhaps shouldn't be a surprise given the fact the AirPods Pro 2 earbuds themselves are new, although it isn't clear what changed.
I can confirm that it's not just the AirPods Pro case that got replaced. AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) - v2:A3047: Left BudA3048: Right BudA2968: USB-C Charging CaseSeptember 13, 2023
In a post on X, leaker @aaronp613 notes that there are indeed new versions of the earbuds — because they have new model numbers.
With that in mind it's clear the earbuds have some new smarts in there, potentially an upgraded H2 chip.
We're covering all the Apple iPhone 15 event news and reactions now that Wonderlust is over. Don't miss all our iPhone 15, iPhone 15 Pro, iPhone 15 Pro Max, Apple Watch Series 9, Apple Watch Ultra 2, iOS 17and watchOS 10 coverage so far.
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Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.
Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.