Alongside the new iPhone 15, Apple has announced that the AirPods Pro 2 will come with a new case that uses USB-C instead of a Lightning cable. The new case will offer additional dust resistance (up to IP54) and Lossless Audio with Apple Vision Pro.
This move not only reduces the amount of cables you'll need to bring with you to charge your devices but, according to the European Union, will also reduces the amount of electronic waste that enters landfills each year.
Apple's move to USB-C comes nearly a year ahead of the European Union's mandate that all electronic devices sold on the continent use one standard universal charger.
AirPods Pro 2 with MagSafe Charging Case (USB‐C) will be available to order starting today, with availability in stores beginning Friday, September 22.
Whelp, time for some more audio accessories
While this move won't have any meaningful changes to battery life or charging time (both standards offer fast-charging), it does mean that you'll see a new line of USB-C accessories that will now be available for iPhones, the first of which are the EarPods.
All that being said, the AirPods, AirPods Pro and AirPods Max will likely remain the de facto headphones for Apple device owners, however the switch to USB-C on the iPhone 15 will allow for more options when it comes to audio hardware.
A number of premium headphones can connect wirelessly, obviously, but plugging them in directly via USB-C will allow for better audio quality. A great example of those would be Tom's Guide Awards 2023 winner the Bowers & Wilkins Px8.
Another new avenue that USB-C opens up is compatibility with portable amplifiers. Connect one to your iPhone and you'll experience more nuanced sound and the ability to connect higher-impedance wired headphones.
In short, adding USB-C to its line of devices might not be the largest announcement from today's Wonderlust Apple event, but it definitely opens up some new possibilities in terms of iPhone accessories.