Apple set to discontinue ‘failing’ AirPods and replace with new product in 2022

After unveiling the AirPods 3 in a glitzy multi-million pound ceremony late last year, it looks like Apple could be about to bin them entirely in favour of a swanky new model.

Veteran Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said that the tech giant's product strategy has "failed" and that demand for the recently-launched AirPods 3 is "significantly lower" than AirPods 2, with orders cut by about 30% in total after they were launched alongside the new iPhone 13.

In a tweet, Kuo said he believes that Apple will discontinue the current model of the AirPods Pro later this year "to avoid repeating the same mistake" with its high-end earphones in 2022.

Rumours suggest that the new AirPods Pro could see the 'stem' removed from the earphones, as well as the addition of lossless audio playback, on-device AI, and some additional health features such as a heart rate sensor or accelerometer.

This would see the earphones gain some of the features of the Apple Watch which can help people in an emergency, as well as a flash charging case which would let people use Apple's 'Find My' tool to locate their lost earphones.

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The new AirPods could be about to get much creepier, as Apple has reportedly filed a new patent that would use AI to scan users' inner ears.

This rumoured feature would help stop anyone who isn't you from using the earphones, or let you unlock your iPhone just by putting them in.

The patent also suggests that the feature could be used in conjunction with Apple Health to measure a user's gait to help you stay fit and healthy, or even call for emergency services if you have a fall just like the Apple Watch.

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