Chris Hannah


AirPods and Magnetic Strips #

Ever since purchasing a pair of AirPods about a month ago, I’ve been using them every single day. Usually when I’m commuting to work, or when I’m at work. The case is usually stored in my bag, or on my desk. But occasionally I’ve kept it in my pocket, and I’ve noticed that it’s caused issues with my train ticket.

A few days last week I noticed my train ticket stops working completely after the first barrier I walked through, I presumed it was an issue with the barriers, but it kept happening. Then for some reason (I can’t remember why), I thought about the magnets in the AirPods case, and that the little paper ticket is based on a magnetic strip on the back. So the next day I kept the case well away from my train ticket, and it didn’t have any issue. I’ve done this every day since and it seems to have cured my problem.

I saw someone have a similar issue with a Hotel key card on Reddit, and it reminds me when BlackBerry cases used to cause the same problem, due to the magnet in the case.

So just a little warning, make sure you keep your AirPods away from anything that uses magnets to store data! In my case it’s not really an issue, as I can just show my ticket and get through the barrier. But when it’s a work pass, or something even more valuable like a bank card, it’s a whole different problem/

The Future of Audio is… Delayed? #

We all know Apple want to push wireless as the new way to enjoy audio, and I’m a big fan of it too.

But according to MacRumors, their upcoming AirPods may even be delayed until January 2017:

Following the confirmation that Apple has delayed its wireless "AirPods" beyond the original late October launch window, foreign supply chain sources are now pointing towards a launch date in January 2017, and not the late 2016 estimation that many believed would help the Bluetooth device sell during the holidays. – MacRumors

This is pretty rubbish news. In the ideal situation, I’m sure Apple would of loved to of released the AirPods along with the iPhone 7.

The Lack of a Headphone Port and Potential AirPods #

There’s been constant rumours and opinions, but it seems pretty clear now that the next iPhone will be lacking a 3.5mm headphone port.

I’m not going to ramble on about whether I think it’s a good idea or not, because the decision to remove it has already been made, so there nothing anyone can do to bring it back.

My question is that, will Apple provide a pair of Lightning EarPods, or even a pair of wireless EarPods[1]? And also, which one will be included in the box of every new iPhone?

I can see it being the wired version included in the box, but I will definitely be purchasing the wireless pair if they are available. That’s if they’re reasonably priced. I won’t be spending any more than £50 on a pair.

Once you get a pair of wireless earphones, the power becomes another issue, and they will obviously need internal batteries. So how will they be charged? I’m hoping they will be individual buds, so there’s then two extra batteries to charge.

I also don’t want another charging cable, because that means keeping my iPhone, iPad, Watch, and potential AirPods charged up, will be a nightmare!

I think that they should be charged the same way that an Apple Pencil is, via a male Lightning pin, which can then connect to your iOS device to charge. In my opinion this will need the 80/20 quick charge method that the Watch has, to make sure you can quickly get a decent charge, and get back to listening. Because you don’t want a situation where your away from a power source, your earphones go flat, and you have no way to listen to anything!

A small idea I had was if the earpieces themselves would have a kind of dock/case, like the case the current EarPods come in, and then they would both be charged simultaneously by an internal battery in the case. Which then could be charged by a lightning cable like your iPhone/iPad. This would be a middleman battery, but more bearable than having to charge two buds separately, or having to wait until you get home to charge them.

Anyway, we will all see what happens at Apple’s September event.

  1. Which I certainly hope will be called AirPods. ↩︎