Apple may add new hearing health and body-temperature features to AirPods: Report

Apple may add new hearing health and body-temperature features to AirPods: Report

Tech News

In the latest edition of PowerOn newsletter, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman says that Apple is preparing to bring major hearing health and body-temperature features to AirPods. Gurman states that the company is also gearing to transition to USB-C charging ports on Apple AirPods. In addition, Apple may also introduce cheaper models of the wireless earbuds.

As per the newsletter, Apple is working on a new hearing test feature that will play different tones and sounds to allow the AirPods to determine how well a person can hear. The idea is to help users screen for hearing issues. 

Apple is also exploring ways on how the Apple AirPods could be better positioned as a hearing aid. The hearing aid is a $10 billion-a-year market. Apple has already added hearing-aid-like features, such as Conversation Boost and Live Listen. But these features don’t have regulatory approval yet. 

Another feature that Apple is working on is adding sensors to the AirPods so they can determine body temperature via a wearer’s ear canal. The data collected using this method is considered more accurate than wrist temperature, which is collected on the Apple Watch Series 8 and Ultra models while users sleep. 

Gurman states that both these features are currently under development and are likely several months or even years away. However, changes coming sooner with- iPhone 15 series is USB-C port on the AirPods Pro’s charging case. It also has plans to move to USB-C on future generations of its other audio products.

He also mentions that the AirPods will also be key to the Vision Pro. While the headset has built-in speakers, a special pairing algorithm with second-generation AirPods Pro models also exists. “That’s useful when you don’t want to bother others with your audio, such as on an airplane or during a long car ride. The AirPods could offer an even more immersive audio experience as well,” he says.

Apple also previewed some new AirPods features launching alongside iOS 17 at the last month’s WWDC event. These include features like a button press to mute and unmute yourself on calls, as well as improvements for switching between devices paired to AirPods and addition of Adaptive Audio for automatically moving between noise cancellation and transparency modes. 

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Updated: 03 Jul 2023, 11:46 AM IST

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