Apple unveils new AirPods with hands-free Siri, wireless charging case

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Apple has launched a new version of its hugely popular wireless earbuds, the AirPods, with long-anticipated wireless charging and longer battery life.

The new AirPods have arrived ahead of a March 25 event where it is expected to unveil a television and video service. First, the H1 adds support for "Hey Siri", meaning that you won't need to double-tap your AirPods anymore to activate Siri.

First up is a newly-designed H1 chip which Apple has built specifically for the headphones.

The new AirPods cost the same as the old model, too: $159 with a regular "standard" charging case. According to Apple, AirPods will now deliver up to five hours of listening time, including three hours of talk time, on a single charge.

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For those not interested in wireless charging, the AirPods are also available with a cheaper cable-only charging case for £159 ($159). After you have Siri's attention, you can ask her to adjust your volume, play something specific or call one of your contacts.

For the second generation AirPod with a standard charging case, local consumers will be able to obtain them for RM 699 which is RM 50 more than the first generation AirPods prior to the launch of the new model. Similar to the previous AirPods, a quick 15-minute charge is enough to provide up to 3 hours of listening time.

The company unveiled the Qi wireless charging case. That new chip apparently promises improved synchronization as well as two-times faster switching between your iOS devices and the Apple Watch.

In a surprise announcement following a string of daily releases this week, Apple today announced a major update to AirPods, the company's wireless earbuds. Woop! We'll have a review up ASAP but basically they're AirPods, but a little bit better. We're sure bigger changes will come to the AirPods eventually, but these are more like AirPods 1.5 rather than AirPods 2. Buyers can look forward to hands-free "Hey Siri", an additional hour of talk time in between charges, and even better connectivity.

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