With Apple’s new systems, the AirPods Pro should reproduce a 5.1, 7.1 and Dolby Atmos sound as you know it from (expensive) and built-in surround systems. This is all the more surprising when you consider that there are only two small loudspeakers that are spread over two ears. Here, however, Apple plays a trump card. The headphones use an accelerometer to determine their relative movement and signal strength around their distance from the iOS device. In Apple’s typical obsession with detail, head movements relative to the iPhone or iPad screen are determined and applied to the display using algorithms. If the user turns his head, the sound behaves differently than when he moves the iPad. If all devices are moving – the user is sitting on a bus that is driving around a curve – the iOS device and the Airpods also process this “acoustically” correctly.
These calculations make it possible to position an audio source correctly and leave it in its virtual location. In this way, users as viewers can get caught in the middle of the film. Apple basically promises that they will not only hear a pin drop, but also hear exactly where it fell.
In addition to the Airpods Pro, the user also needs an iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro for Spatial Audio Max or an iPhone SE (2nd generation). On the iPad side, an iPad Pro 12.9-inch (from 3rd generation), iPad Pro 11-inch, iPad Air (3rd generation), iPad (from 6th generation) or an iPad Mini (5th generation) is required. So far it is unknown whether the whole thing works with the Apple TV.
Airpods Pro, Airpods of the second generation, Powerbeats, Powerbeats Pro and Beats Solo Pro get a function with the next software generation of iOS and macOS with the name “Auto Switching”. This function allows the headphones to establish or change the connection between iPhone, Watch, iPad and Mac depending on the situation. If the user hears a podcast on the iPad, the headphones automatically switch to the iPhone when they are called.
Apple didn’t mention one feature at the keynote: it’s about the life of the batteries. Apple has integrated intelligent charging logic to stop the battery aging or slow it down. With this, the system should recognize when the user normally uses his Airpods. With this feature, the charging case keeps the capacity of the battery at 80 percent and only increases this to the full 100 percent shortly before commissioning. At least the current developer beta informs the user exactly about this fact.
This means that a feature introduced with iOS 13 for the iPhone has found its way into the Airpods. This is very much to be welcomed, since the small batteries lose a lot of running time after a few months / years.
It is not surprising that Apple cannot mention or mention everything on the WWDC keynote due to the short time and the sheer volume of news. There is one more thing in the audio environment: With iOS 14, the iPhone can warn of certain noises. For example, the feature for the noises:
– Cat dog,
– Domestic appliances,
– baby cries,
– as well as knocking on the door
to be activated. Once activated, noise detection takes place continuously on the device.
It is gratifying to see how Apple is even retrofitting functions for hardware that has already been released. I am very excited to see how good the sound really is. It would of course be great if the whole thing also worked on an Apple TV. The noise warning is a feature that I have activated, even if I am not suffering from a hearing impairment. (Macworld)