27 Mar, 2023
1 min time to read

According to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple may begin shipping the AirPods Pro with a charging case that uses USB-C later this year.

Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has suggested that a USB-C version of the second-generation AirPods Pro could be released by Apple with a USB-C case during the second or third quarter of this year. This change will reportedly not apply to the standard AirPod models, as Kuo notes that there are no current plans for USB-C versions of the AirPods 2 & 3. Kuo hinted at the change in response to a tweet from a Twitter user who spotted references to new AirPods model numbers in iOS 16.4.

The second-generation AirPods Pro were launched by Apple in September of last year, and came with a Lightning port and compatibility with MagSafe, Qi, and Apple Watch chargers. Apple also added a few new features to the case, including a speaker that emits a noise when locating them with the Find My app and a built-in loop to attach a lanyard. However, it is not yet clear whether the updated AirPods Pros will come with any additional changes, or whether Apple will sell the rumored USB-C case separately.

As the European Union plans to require USB-C charging ports on many types of new electronic devices next year, Apple's move away from Lightning is not surprising. The company confirmed last year that it plans on changing the iPhone's connector to USB-C, and rumors indicate that the iPhone 15 will come with the port. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman has predicted that Apple could bring USB-C to its AirPods and Mac accessories by 2024, while Kuo has previously reported that the fourth-generation AirPods could come with a USB-C charging case and launch in the second half of 2024 or the first half of 2025.