AirPods Pro get a huge new Dolby Atmos update in iOS 14

Airpods Pro
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The Apple AirPods Pro are getting a hefty firmware upgrade with iOS 14, which will allow for Dolby Atmos spatial audio, bringing immersive 3D sound to your true wireless earbuds.

Announced at the company's WWDC 2020 keynote, the new feature will work in 5.1, 7.1, and Dolby Atmos, which positions sound all around you within a virtual sphere – that means that if you're watching a Dolby Atmos film that shows a plane flying overheard, it will sound as though the plane is really passing above you. 

As well as allowing for clever virtual Dolby Atmos, the AirPods Pro will also be able to tracks the motion of your head and your device, to ensure that the audio always appear to originate from the correct position.

This new feature could make the AirPods Pro an even more formidable competitor for the best true wireless earbuds of 2020, the Sony WF-1000XM3 – and we can't wait to test it out for ourselves.

What about the AirPods Studio?

It's not just the AirPods Pro that are getting a refresh – the 2019 AirPods are also getting a firmware upgrade that should make it easier for you to switch between different devices while listening. 

A new auto-switching feature means that the AirPods can now "magically switch over between devices", detecting automatically which device you are using.

For example, if you've just finished listening to a podcast on your phone, you can pick up your iPad to watch a TV shows and the AirPods will connect to the tablet automatically. It's a nifty feature, and yet another way AirPods are tailor-made for the Apple ecosystem.

Sadly, there's been no news on the AirPods Studio, the first Apple over-ear headphones that were said to be launching at WWDC 2020. The keynote isn't over, but with no mention of the rumored cans during that AirPods segment, we think we may be disappointed.

Olivia Tambini

Olivia was previously TechRadar's Senior Editor - Home Entertainment, covering everything from headphones to TVs. Based in London, she's a popular music graduate who worked in the music industry before finding her calling in journalism. She's previously been interviewed on BBC Radio 5 Live on the subject of multi-room audio, chaired panel discussions on diversity in music festival lineups, and her bylines include T3, Stereoboard, What to Watch, Top Ten Reviews, Creative Bloq, and Croco Magazine. Olivia now has a career in PR.