Third-Gen AirPods With AirPods Pro Design to Cost $200 and Launch in First Half of 2021

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Apple’s third-generation AirPods, which are expected to adopt the AirPods Pro design but lack noise-cancelling and transparency features, will launch in the first half of next year for around $200, claims a new report from TheElec today.

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Not for the first time in the rumor sphere, today’s report refers to the earbuds as a “Lite” version of the ‌AirPods Pro‌, but TheElec additionally suggests they will be priced “20% cheaper” than the $249 ‌AirPods Pro‌, which would put them around the $200 price point.

Apple will launch a Lite version of its Airpods Pro wireless earphones without noise canceling feature in the first half of 2021, TheElec has learned.

A person familiar with the matter said the Lite version will be priced 20% cheaper than the normal Airpods Pro which has noise canceling tech.

This is the same price as the current second-generation ‌AirPods‌ with Wireless Charging Case, suggesting the new model would replace them. If so, Apple’s ‌AirPods‌ lineup would adopt the ‌AirPods Pro‌ design signature across the board – or at least until Apple releases its second-generation ‌AirPods Pro‌, which could look more like Samsung’s Galaxy Buds, according to Bloomberg.

Rumors that Apple is working on third-generation ‌AirPods‌ for launch in the first half of next year first surfaced in April 2020 in a note to investors by Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

Kuo said the new ‌‌‌AirPods‌‌‌ will adopt the system-in-package (SiP) used for the ‌‌AirPods Pro‌‌‌‌, and later suggested this will allow for a form factor similar to the ‌AirPods Pro‌, featuring a shorter stem and replaceable ear tips. Kuo also said battery life could be improved, and a lack of noise cancelation features would make the ‌AirPods‌ 3 more affordable.

A South Korean supplier is developing the ‌AirPods‌’ new SiP used for the H1 chip, which is said to be a “simple square shape,” in contrast to the ‌AirPods Pro‌ SiP, which is “round-shaped like a mouse,” according to TheElec. The supplier will go through Apple’s quality review within the year and begin mass production next year, the report adds.

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