AirPods 3, the successor of the 2-year-and-7-month old AirPods 2, was officially announced on October 18 2021. So many users are wondering about the new features of AirPods 3 (vs AirPods 2).
This AirPods guide explains the top 8 improvements and new features of AirPods 3 vs AirPods 2: the Force Sensor, IPX4 water-resistance rating, longer battery life, Spatial audio, wireless charging, adaptive EQ, Find My Network, and improved design.
As mentioned, AirPods 3 is the successor to AirPods 2 with considerable upgrades. They share a similar design and use the same H1 chip. But Apple managed to add some exciting new features to AirPods 3. Some are ported from AirPods Pro and AirPods Max.
Compared to AirPods 2, you may find the following 8 improvements and new features of AirPods 3.
Force Sensor: the best of the new features of AirPods 3
In AirPods 2, you have to tap (mostly, double-tap) to control the earbuds. With AirPods 3, you can now press the Force Sensor at the stem of the earbuds. More gestures (single, double, triple presses, and long-press) can be used.
Personally, I would rate this Force Sensor as the No.1 new feature of AirPods 3.
Sweat and Water Resistance
AirPods 3 has an IPX4 rating for sweat and water resistance. So, it is safe to use these wireless earbuds in a heavy workout or even on rainy days.
As a comparison, AirPods 2 has no official rating for sweat and water resistance, although many AirPods 2 owners use them in the workouts without issues.
The IPX4 is surely one of the most wanted new features of AirPods 3 for many AirPods or AirPods 2 owners.
Longer battery life
AirPods 3 offers a playtime of 6 hours on a single charge (or 5 with spatial audio enabled). The talk time is about 4 hours.
As a comparison, AirPods 2 can last about 5 hours on one charge. The talk time is about 3 hours only.
The charging case of AirPods 3 can provide about 30 hours of listening time. While AirPods 2’s charging case provides about 24 hours of playtime.
Spatial audio with dynamic head tracking was first introduced for AirPods Pro. It offers more immersive sound experiences than normal stereo by mimicking the theatre-like sound coming from all around you.
In a nutshell, spatial audio actually does two things:
- Spatialize stereo sound (simialar to virtualized 3D sound).
- Position the sound precisely based on your head movement (which was calcualted from the accelerometers and gyroscopes data).
Please note, Spatial Audio is totally different from Sony’s 360 Reality Audio or Samsung’s 360 Audio. They were developed independently (and internally) by these companies. And they usually work best on their own devices.
AirPods 3 charging case supports Qi wireless chargers (and Apple’s MagSafe charger). Of course, you can still charge it with a lightning cable.
For AirPods 2, there are two versions of the charging case. The default one can only be charged through the lightning port. You need to pay $40 more to get the charging case with wireless charging.
Adaptive EQ tunes sound in real-time based on how AirPods 3 fit in your ears (and the shape of your ears). It uses the inward-facing microphone to monitor the sound and then tunes the low and mid frequencies to compensate for the possible losses.
Apple first introduced the adaptive EQ in AirPods Pro and then in AirPods Max. Now AirPods 3 also gets this feature.
Find My network
Find My is a revolutionary (and unfortunately underrated) tracking feature. It helps you locate your lost or stolen Apple devices.
AirPods 3 is fully supported in the Find My network, together with AirPods Pro and AirPods Max.
AirPods 3 has tweaked contours that apparently make the earbuds fit better for most owners. The new shape also funnels audios better directly to the ear canals.
Do you have any questions on the new features of AirPods 3 vs AirPods 2?
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You may check this guide if you are comparing AirPods 3 vs AirPods Pro.
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