New AirPods Pro 2 leak says Apple's wireless earbuds could come in late 2022

(Image credit: Apple)

Even more evidence suggests Apple’s AirPods Pro 2 wireless earbuds will launch in the second half of 2022.

This release schedule was first hinted at by respected Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo a month ago, and now a DigiTimes report suggests that AirPods chip suppliers are ramping up production ahead of a product launch later this year.

Production has also increased for older AirPods lines following a boost in popularity at the end of 2021.

Based on Apple’s typical event schedule this rumor means we’ll likely see the AirPods Pro 2 announced in September 2022 or (more likely) October 2022 – though it's possible Apple’s plans could change, so take this with a pinch of salt until we get an official announcement.

Regardless of when Apple unveils the AirPods Pro 2, it already sounds like they're set to be a nifty pair of wireless earbuds based on the leaks we’ve heard so far.

What we know about the AirPods Pro 2

All the way back in October 2020 LeaksApplePro suggested the AirPods Pro 2 will launch with improved active noise cancellation and fitness tracking features – including the Apple Watch 6 and Apple Watch 7’s ability to measure blood oxygen levels.

More recently Bloomberg reported that "people familiar with the plans" had claimed the new AirPods Pro be completely redesigned – moving away from ear steams and towards a "more rounded shape that fills more of a user's ear." While we can’t be certain what the final product looks like, this sounds awfully similar to the shape of the  Samsung Galaxy Buds and the Google Pixel Buds.

Last, but certainly not least, the AirPods Pro 2 are rumored to include a "significantly upgraded chip" compared to the H1 chip currently powering Apple’s earbuds and over-ear headphones.

This rumor also stems from Ming-Chi Kuo, and while details aren’t confirmed, he has indicated that the AirPods Pro 2 will finally support Apple Lossless (ALAC) audio – making them the first AirPods to achieve this standard.

Of all the rumors this certainly seems the most likely. One of the most embarrassing issues with the AirPods line is that they don’t support Apple Music’s lossless audio – making them a worse choice for Apple’s own platform than some third-party rivals.

In an interview with What HiFi, Apple’s VP of acoustics Gary Geaves suggested that his team wants “more bandwidth” than Bluetooth provides – adding that his team has “a number of tricks we can play to maximize or get around some of the limits of Bluetooth.”

If the rumors are true, we'll hopefully get to see these tricks in action later this year.

Hamish Hector
Senior Staff Writer, News

Hamish is a Senior Staff Writer for TechRadar and you’ll see his name appearing on articles across nearly every topic on the site from smart home deals to speaker reviews to graphics card news and everything in between. He uses his broad range of knowledge to help explain the latest gadgets and if they’re a must-buy or a fad fueled by hype. Though his specialty is writing about everything going on in the world of virtual reality and augmented reality.