Photos of Apple's worst-kept secret have popped up online once again, with its still-unannounced Beats Studio Buds appearing in new images submitted to Taiwan's National Communications Commission (NCC) database, as spotted by MacRumors.
The regulatory images, which show the Beats Studio Buds in a black color option, give us our best look at the earbuds yet, offering a good indication of the size and shape of the AirPods alternative.
Regulatory photo for Beats Studio Buds (with silicone tip)
Regulatory photo for Beats Studio Buds (without silicone tip)
Additionally, the pictures show one of the Beats Studio Buds with and without a silicone ear tip, which will presumably be included with the earbuds in a variety of sizes.
According to MacRumors, the database also confirms that the Beats Studio Buds use a USB-C cable for charging, which is backed up by the inclusion of a USB-C port on the Buds' charging case rather than a Lightning port.
The new images have arrived after what seems like a number of carefully orchestrated 'leaks', including renders discovered inside Apple's tvOS 14.6 and iOS 14.6 betas, and some very public photos of LeBron James wearing the unreleased buds that were posted to his Instagram.
- Beats Studio Buds: everything we know so far
- The best wireless earbuds you can buy
- Read our Powerbeats Pro review
Beats Studio Buds: what can we expect?
Beats' upcoming Studio Buds are expected to be the brand's first true wireless earbuds to release since 2019's more sports-focused Powerbeats Pro.
While the aforementioned Powerbeats Pro featured a fitness-friendly design and was clearly aimed at the more physically active among us, the Beats Studio Buds appear to simply be traditional wireless earbuds.
This may lead some to wonder why Apple would choose to step on its own toes by releasing a product that may split focus away from its own AirPods Pro in-ear headphones.
That said, we don't really know anything about the Beats Studio Buds at this stage. What kind of listening experience will they provide? Will they deliver the usual bass-heavy audio that Beats is known for? What about active noise cancelling? And how much will they cost?
All of these questions remain unanswered, so we'll have to wait until Apple officially lifts the curtain on Beats' new wireless buds to find out what makes them special. Hopefully, we won't have to wait much too much longer...
- Check out our Apple AirPods Pro review
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Stephen primarily covers phones and entertainment for TechRadar's Australian team, and has written professionally across the categories of tech, film, television and gaming in both print and online for over a decade. He's obsessed with smartphones, televisions, consoles and gaming PCs, and has a deep-seated desire to consume all forms of media at the highest quality possible.
He's also likely to talk a person’s ear off at the mere mention of Android, cats, retro sneaker releases, travelling and physical media, such as vinyl and boutique Blu-ray releases. Right now, he's most excited about QD-OLED technology, The Batman and Hellblade 2: Senua's Saga.