If you follow me on Twitter, you're probably aware of I've been waiting for a long time for Apple to release the new versions of its AirPods. The company finally launched them this month and I was quick to pre-order one. Apple sent my new AirPods 2 yesterday and I used it for the last day. Here are some of my thoughts.
I haven't used the original AirPods at all, but I've been using wireless headphones for a while. Coming to AirPods 2, the wireless experience wasn't really all that new to me. What was new was the convenience of AirPods.
Connecting to AirPods is incredibly fast and easy, especially since I have an iPhone and a Mac. And with the new H1 chip on AirPods 2, the connection also works faster. I compared the connection to my AirPods 2 with a friend's original AirPods, and the mine was a bit faster to connect. And that's not a big thing, but the new H1 does, so switching between different devices is faster, and that's where the remarkable difference is. Of course, this doesn't really work when you connect to a non-Apple device, so when I switch between my Windows 10 machine and my iPhone, the experience is a bit safe.
AirPods 2 also brings Hey Siri, which is one of the more exciting features of this year's update. Hi Siri lets you activate Siri with your voice without having to double-click your AirPods and it works really well. Siri is quick to discover hotword and starts answering your questions on AirPods 2, but it's a bit confusing at first. There isn't really any real indication of when Siri actually listens to you, but it's a learning curve that you can get across quite easily.
What is weird, but actually speaking with Siri publicly. When I listen to music and I can't really hear my own voice, I was worried that I would say "Hey Siri" loudly in public and everyone would look at me as a weird. And to be honest, I was just trying to get Siri to activate with a silent voice first and get higher slowly to finally get Siri to listen to me. Again, it's a learning curve you get used to quickly.
In terms of performance, Siri on AirPods 2 works fine and it is very fast to react too. And the fact that you don't have to take your phone out of your pocket is very convincing, especially if you, for example, Are in a real packed train.
Wireless charging is a big part of AirPods 2 by road. Apple actually sells two different variants of AirPods 2 – one with a regular charge case for $ 159, and another with a wireless charge case for $ 199. actually make it out of Apple HQ's but I don't actually have a wireless charger right now. But here's the case: One of my friends had a Galaxy S10, and because that phone has the new Wireless PowerShare feature, I could charge my AirPods just by placing it on the S10. And it was … pretty cold. This is Samsung innovative here, just to be clear. Apple will of course copy PowerShare on future iPhones, so I'm glad I got $ 199 AirPods 2 instead of the regular one.
Sound quality wise, AirPods 2 sounds nice. It sounds identical to the original AirPods, and the sound quality is nothing out of this world. It's not really "big" for $ 199 headphones, but it does the job. I think if you are not a sound like me, these things sound fine.
I also haven't had enough time with the new AirPods to comment on the battery life that Apple says has improved with this year's update. But the fact that I have listened to music without stopping for hours without running out of battery is probably a good indication of battery life.
And as a new AirPods user, I love some of the classic AirPods features like all the gesture-based controls. Pressing AirPods to play / pause or play the next track is really cool, and it is actually very handy to be able to stop playback automatically when you take one of the AirPod's out.
But because my previous wireless headphones actually had a wire, the new AirPods felt a little weird when they left. I've always found myself trying to get rid of it by pulling the thread, but obviously it doesn't exist here. I've also found AirPods a little clumsy when they take the AirPods case out and put them back, though that's probably something I will get used to when using these more.
Whatever I really like the new AirPods. I wanted to get one for a very long time, so I am very happy with these. There are some things I would like Apple to improve with a future release, but of course it includes the sound quality and the improved design (especially for the charging case, which I think is a bit big).
Marked with AirPods 2, Apple AirPods