Everyone's talking about the first Apple over-ear headphones, the so-called AirPods Studio, but it looks like the iPhone 12 launch on October 13 could also see in a new pair of Powerbeats Pro true wireless earbuds.
The Beats Powerbeats Pro 2 have been rumored for a while, and Apple has just removed the Beats landing page (opens in new tab) from its website ahead of the iPhone event.
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- New iPhone 12: what we know so far
- iPhone 12: 10 big changes Apple is set to make to the iPhone
The iPhone 12 launch event is scheduled to start at 10am PT, 1pm ET or 6pm BST. That's 4am AEDT in Australia on October 14, and we've got a full guide covering how to watch the iPhone 12 launch live.
No pictures, please
An October 13 release date for the second-gen Powerbeats Pro makes sense based on the FFC filing that first alerted us to the earbuds' possible existence back in March.
The FCC ID BCGA2453 filing describes ‘totally wireless high-performance earphones’ and corresponds to Apple’s model numbers A2453 and A2454 – though whether those two different model numbers corresponds to two new versions of the Powerbeats Pro remains to be seen.
Most interestingly, Apple requested that the FCC withhold external photographs, internal photographs, test setup photographs, and the user manual for the new Powerbeats until October 12, 2020 – that's today.
So, it's possible that we could get our first glimpse of the Powerbeats Pro 2 very soon indeed – and it's looking increasingly likely that they'll be announced at the iPhone 12 launch event.
Unfortunately, the FCC filing doesn't give away much in terms of specs, other than the wireless frequency the true wireless earbuds will operate on (2.402-2.48 GHz) and some really technical information about the kind of wireless transmitter it will have inside.
It's entirely possible that this filing represents a minor tweak to the original Powerbeats Pro, rather than a truly new model – perhaps in a similar vein to the AirPods (2019), which replaced the 2016 AirPods.
The original Powerbeats Pro are among the best running headphones you can buy, with a secure ear hook design, powerful bass, and a comfy fit.
Saying that, there are plenty of upgrades we'd like to see, including AirPods Pro-style noise cancellation, support for Spatial Audio, a higher IP water-resistance rating, and the ability to customize the sound of the wireless earbuds through an in-app equalizer.
Hopefully, we won't have too long to wait to find out – and if Apple also announces the AirPods Studio at tomorrow's event, the world of personal audio is in for a huge shake up.