Apple's "Unleashed" event today focused on music and the Mac, with the company revealing updated products in each category. We finally got word of the next-generation AirPods, which have a new design and support for spatial audio plus MagSage wireless charging. The company also unveiled new colors for its HomePod mini smart speaker and two new MacBook Pros for the power users among us. The laptops run on the company's new M1 Pro and M1 Max chipsets and sport revamped designs with webcam notches, Liquid Retina XDR displays and extra ports (HDMI and an SD slot!). Here's how to pre-order everything Apple announced today.
Apple kicked off the show by talking about music and revealing new AirPods. The third-generation AirPods bring a new design, wireless charging capabilities and spatial audio support. They're available for pre-order today from Apple's website and cost $179. They'll be available in stores on October 26th.
The third-gen AirPods have a contoured design that looks similar to the AirPods Pro, but they don't have the interchangeable ear tips of Apple's more advanced earbuds. Inside the buds is a new low-distortion driver that produces powerful bass along with crisp highs. These buds have a few features previously only available on AirPods Pro and AirPods Max, including spatial audio and Adaptive EQ, the latter of which automatically adjusts frequencies in real time based on what you're listening to.
The new AirPods have a sweat and water-resistant design and Apple improved the battery life, too. These should last up to six hours on a charge, and you'll get an hour of listening time after only five minutes of charging. The case is now MagSafe and wireless-charging capable and it holds four additional full charges, so you can enjoy around 30 hours of total listening time.
Apple is keeping the second-generation AirPods around, which will be good for anyone who doesn't want to shell out $179 for the new ones. The second-generation AirPods are now priced at $129, and the AirPods Pro are still listed $250 (although you can often find them for less) and they now come with a MagSafe charging case.
Apple's latest 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pros come equipped with the company's new M1 Pro or M1 Max processors, and feature a brand new design with a webcam notch and some much-requested extra ports. Both models are available for pre-order today from Apple's website. The 14-inch MacBook Pro starts at $1,999 while the 16-inch version starts at $2,499. They'll be widely available on October 26th.
The new MacBook Pros have aluminum enclosures and an advanced thermal system that's built to handle the power that comes with Apple's latest, high-end chipsets. The laptop ushers in several significant design changes, including a new keyboard that's supposed to be more similar to the company's Magic Keyboard for iMac. Also, the TouchBar is gone; it's been replaced with physical Function keys, something that TouchBar skeptics will likely cheer.
These MacBook Pros are thicker than previous models because they actually have a healthy variety of ports. Both have a total of three Thunderbolt 4 ports along with an HDMI socket, an SD card slot, a headphone jack and a MagSafe connector for charging (although you can power up via the Thunderbolt ports as well). This will be a welcome change for power users who have been living the dongle life for years with previous-gen MacBook Pros.
Additionally, the new laptops have Liquid Retina XDR displays that reach almost to the end of the machines' lids, interrupted by a notch that holds the 1080p webcam. The 14-inch model has a 14.2-inch 3,024 x 1,964 resolution screen, to be precise, while the 16-inch model has a 16.2-inch 3,456 x 2,234 panel. Both support ProMotion with refresh rates up to 120Hz. Apple is promising up to 17 hours of video playback on the 14-inch model and up to 21 hours of video playback on the larger version. As for other specs, you can customize the laptops with up to 32GB of RAM and up to a whopping 8TB of storage.
Lastly, Apple announced new colors of the HomePod mini: yellow, orange and blue. Those join the existing space gray and white color options and will be available to order from Apple's website in November for $99.
Follow all of the news from Apple’s Mac event right here.