Talking Tech - Vision Australia Radio

Talking Tech 03 December 2019

December 3, 2019

My Review of the Airpods Pro

In the box: wireless charging case (no other option) containing the Airpods Pro, cardboard sleeve containing two ear tip pair sizes (small and large) with the medium tips already on the AirPods, lightning to USBC cable, and getting started guide.

Charging case is much more rectangular in shape than the previous AirPods with the long side containing the lid rather than the short side on the previous AirPods.

Charging case still has the Connect button on the back for pairing to other devices than the iPhone etc.

To pair, simply open the lid near your iOs device and a popup dialog will appear for connection plus info about using the new gestures.

A big simple tip on getting the Airpods Pro out of the case, pull each AirPod Pro forward in the case and it will come out easily, don’t try and grasp it like the older AirPods as this will be quite difficult to do.

The Airpods Pro themselves: the stem is shorter containing the force touch area facing front, and the part that goes in to the ear is more rounded as it contains the attachment for the silicone tips.

To pull the ear tips off, grasp towards the bottom of the ear tip where it clips on to each AirPod Pro and pull.  To put them back on, position the round clip and push down, you’ll will fill a click.

One important thing about the tips, they are just rubber not rubber over a plastic inner tip which means they conform to your inside of your ear much better.

Take time to try out all the tips from the cardboard container to get the best fit.

To confirm you have the best listening fit, with the Airpods Pro connected go in to Settings, Bluetooth, the Info button for the Airpods Pro, and choose Ear Tip Fit Test to test the best fit for acoustic performance.

The Airpods Pro have an inner and outer microphone to balance and monitor sound, especially for noise cancellation and transparency.

The stem press’s  or as I like to call them squeezes are:

Long squeeze, switch between Noise Cancellation and transparency mode: you’ll hear a click to let you know the long squeeze has started and then one tone for Noise or two tones for transparency modes.

One squeeze: start/stop media or answer a call, you’ll hear one click.

Two quick squeezes: next track, you’ll hear two clicks.

Three quick squeezes: previous track, you’ll hear 3 clicks.

Again Apple’s attention to detail, you’ll hear the click of the squeeze in then AirPod you have squeezed: eg left or right.

For those that have used the clicker on the wire of the wired Ear Pods, the 1, 2 and 3 squeezes are exactly the same as clicking on the button of the clicker.

If you find the squeezes a bit hard to do, you can make them slower by going to Settings, Accessibility, AirPods, and change squeeze speed and hold.  Here as well, you can turn on Noise Cancelation if you only have one AirPod in.

You can use Hey Siri with the AirPods.

You can use Airpods Pro with Live Listen, especially with Noise Cancellation which allows you to concentrate on the person speaking in to your iPhone microphone.

Noise Cancellation works extremely well by cutting out low to medium frequency sounds, very useful when on a train, plane, or cutting out sound at home like the tV in the other room etc.

Transparency which allows you to hear what is around you, works extremely well and is in stereo which allows you to identify where sounds are coming from.

In either Noise Cancellation or Transparency Modes, you don’t hear yourself speak inside your head like some other inner Ear ear buds.

The Transparency Mode in the Galaxy Buds if you have ever tried this, work nothing like the Airpods Pro i.e. with the Buds you can’t tell where the sound is coming from and your voice sounds quite loud.

Even if your Airpods Pro are not connected to your iPhone, you can still use Noise or Transparency Modes to block out or listen to what is around you.

A great feature with Siri is that you can say “turn on or off Noise /cancellation” or “turn on or off Transparency Mode”.

With Siri, you can easily check the battery status of the Airpods Pro.

Find My works with the Airpods of course.

As with the AirPods, once you have paired the Airpods Pro, all other devices that share the same Apple ID will have the Airpods Pro listed ready to use.

Airpods Pro will give 4.5 (if Noise or Transparency Mode on) to 5 hours of use, charging case gives 24 hours of recharge, and plugging in Airpods Pro in to case for about 30 minutes will give about 50 percent charge back.

You can still use a standard lightning to UsB cable for the Airpods Pro charger or plug them in to a MacBook that uses USBC ports to charge the charging case.

Sweat and water resistant with an iPX4 rating.

Charging case, Airpods Pro, and ear tips are all white.

Airpods Pro require iOS 13.2, Apple Watch 6, and Mac OS Catalina.  iPod touch 7th generation, iPhone SE and above, Apple TV (known as Apple TV HD), and Apple Watch 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1 will all work with the Airpods Pro.  Supported Macs go back a fair time as well, use the following link to find about the technical specifications of the AirPod Pro, and supported OS:

https://www.apple.com/au/airpods-pro/specs/

My thoughts:

I have changed my use of AirPods, now with the Pros, I now use both AirPods all the time, not just one.

The ear tips make the Airpods Pro much more useful when in louder environments.

Having the ability to switch between noise cancellation and transparency mode easily for me is a significant game changer, especially when I just want to block out the outside world as it were.

Feel safe when travelling around due to the excellent transparency mode.

The attention to detail with having noise cancellation when only using one AirPod pro, plus the ability to adjust the squeeze gestures is again an example of Apple not necessarily inventing something new, but doing it better.

As with the Apple Watch and the ease of changing bands, Apple has done this with the ear tips, plus the fact you don’t have hard plastic going in to your ear as with other ear phones I’ve tried.

I would have really liked knowledge on how to get the Airpods Pro out of the charging case as I tried to pull them out the same way I did with the previous AirPods which makes it very difficult, pushing them forward to have them just simply pop out is great, but I didn’t know that smile.

Having the ear tip in your ear, makes you feel that the Airpods Pro will not fall out as easily as the AirPods, although I’ve really not had the AirPods fall out.

People report that for Audio Files, there are still better inner Ear ear Phones out there for listening to music, but overall and ease of use, the Airpods Pro still do an excellent job.  As I mainly listen to VoiceOver, audio books, podcasts etc, Airpods Pro do the job exactly.

Airpods Pro retail for $399 in Australia.

Finishing Off Some More Christmas Ideas

Apple Watch Series 3 or Series 5.

Apple TV 4th Generation (Apple TV HD, not the 4K one).

The Ember Temperature Controlled Mug.

The Tile Tag Tracking System.

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