Apple Patents Design For Interchangeable AirPods With Biometrics And Brand New Design
The AirPods are the most popular accessory manufactured by tech giant Apple, till date. A pair of wireless earbuds, which connect to your device via Bluetooth, they are one of the most, of not the most popular wireless earbuds. Additionally, they also have Siri connectivity and of course, the excellent design and build quality from Apple. However, the AirPods have been long overdue for an upgrade. This upgrade seems to be near. A recent report stated that we will get to see upgraded AirPods next year. However, a patent by Apple has given us insight as to what the AirPods might look like in 2020 and beyond.
The new patent talks about interchangeable AirPods, which will use biometric sensors to make this come true. According to the patent, this will give the AirPods the ability to fit into any ear, regardless of the orientation. This is a step closer to the ‘Golden Bud’ fit Apple had dreamt of, years back. The term refers to a pair of earbuds which will be the perfect fit, for any user. Regardless of the shape and size of their ear.
Apple did go through a lot of steps to ensure the the design of the existing AirPods gives the most universally fitting shape. But there is always room for improvement. The patent describes that the earbuds will be configured with one or more biometric sensors. If at least one of the sensors is pressed up against a portion of the ear, it can then use biometrics to detect which side it is. This will allow to configure and alter the settings for that ear. Hence, the issue of having to see which goes into the left ear and which goes into the right will be eliminated.
From the images in the patent, we can see that the new AirPods will be totally different in design. They will be more compact, similar to the PixelBuds in terms of size. The patent also included a foam ring which will apparently expand to establish contact with the skin. This is done as some part of the earbuds need to be in contact with the skin to carry out the biometric processes. The company could have chosen plastic, but the foam ring will be more convenient and easier on the user’s ears.
This could also result in a lesser cost of manufacturing and replacement for the AirPods. As now Apple would not have to manufacture Left or Right side specific components. However, whether that will translate to the retail prices of the AirPods is still not known.
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As is with every leak and patent, it is best to take this news with a pinch of salt. We might not see this technology for a while and it is also possible that it may never come into production, as is the case with many patents. But with the demand for the AirPods on the rise, we hope that Apple does implement these new features.