With the upcoming “Wonderlust” Apple event scheduled for September 12, the rumored AirPods USB-C charging case could soon become a reality.
According to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, Apple Inc. has scheduled its latest product upgrade event, with the iPhone 15 range slated to be released to the world. The event is set to take place in Cupertino, at Apple’s Steve Jobs Theater. Amidst the excitement and curiosity around the entry-level and high-end iPhone models set for release, the talk around the AirPods Pro 2023 charging case has also been stirring up the dust.
The second generation AirPods Pro launch in 2022 had a range of features that were announced. With its updated H2 chip, the enhanced audio performance of the AirPods, along with its noise cancellation features and immersive spatial audio upgrades, the focus lay primarily on the AirPods quality updates. However, the updates to the charging case were notable as well, with its built-in loop for a lanyard attachment as well as the Precision Finding feature that enabled users to find a misplaced case with ease. The charging case also had built-in speakers to simplify the search process. The second-generation AirPods Pro case also ensured compatibility with the Apple Watch and MagSafe chargers, lightning cables, as well as the Qi-certified charging mat.
Despite the range of charging options presented though, the charging port is set to change yet again.
Why is the AirPods Pro Charging Case Shifting to a USB-C Charging Port?
This is not the first time the Apple brand has been associated with unexpected product changes. In 2016, Apple shook the world with its decision to drop the headphone jack from its latest model. In 2017, it did away with the fingerprint sensor. This time, the shift to the USB-C type charging port is not a voluntary design choice for the AirPod Pro or any other Apple product. Following an announcement by the EU Parliament, all rechargeable products that rely on a wired cable and function with a power delivery nearing 100 Watts will now require a USB-C port in order to enter the European market. The announcement has been made in an attempt to reduce the consumer’s dependence on an exclusive set of manufacturers. The change will also allow customers to reuse chargers and decrease unnecessary spending. The standardization of products will affect not just phones and earphones, but other electronic products like keyboards, speakers, handheld game consoles, etc. that meet the set criteria.
Following the announcement, Apple and other companies now have the options of avoiding the European market entirely, releasing EU-specific product lines separately, or conducting a complete overhaul of their products universally with the recommended design change. With other countries slowly considering the shift to regulated USB-C charging ports, it is clear that the AirPods Pro cases will not be the only ones undergoing change.
Will the AirPods Cases Have Any Other Upgrades Other than USB-C Charging?
It is unclear whether the charging cases will feature any other device upgrades. With the last upgrade in 2022, it might be too soon for a product upgrade or tweaks to the AirPods earphones themselves. It is also unclear whether the USB-C charging cases will be available separately for older models, but this product range is unlikely. Apple’s iOS 17 upgrade announced in June is set to provide some upgraded features alongside firmware updates but no connections to the upcoming USB-C AirPods Pro 2023 release have been seen.
As such, the launch event will likely focus majorly on the iPhone 15 lineup. All the unreleased iPhones are also rumored to be making the move to the USB-C charging port in order to adhere to the EU regulations. This shift likely signals a gradual end to the iconic Lightning charger that Apple has flaunted since 2012.