The AirPods Pro Design Is Already a Meme

(Image credit: Apple /

Apple just announced the AirPods Pro, and they’re some of the ugliest wireless earbuds I’ve ever seen. Sure, everyone shot down the original AirPods at first (and then they became a must-have cult item), but these new buds are downright weird. Thankfully I’m not the only one who thinks AirPods Pro are a no-go.

Not long after Apple’s blog post hit the internet, Twitter users took to meme-ing the heck out of the quirky redesign. 

See more

Tech influencer Marques Brownlee paired a promo picture of the AirPods Pro with Bellsprout, the grass-type Pokémon with a bell-shaped head. With its horn-like beak, cultural icon Nook Nook Penguin kind of looks like AirPods Pro, too.

Brownlee also included an image of a hairdryer, but we saw Business Insider reporter Monica Chin tweet that comparison first. 

See more

Something about the new in-ear tips and shortened stems seem to lend a familiar look to the AirPods Pro. The elongated tunnel designed to send tunes deep into ear canals while cancelling outside sound reminds TIME editor Alex Fitzpatrick of Birdo from the Super Mario franchise.

See more

But that wasn’t the sole Mario reference. Twitter user Super Smith thinks AirPods Pro look like the water gun from Super Mario Sunshine.

See more

Though these memes are entertaining, they don’t change the fact that Apple made an… interesting choice with the AirPods Pro design. I’m not sure what the Cupertino company was going for, but I’m sure it wasn’t in the realm of red-hatted plumbers and Pokémon. Still, the classic AirPods design became common fashion shortly after being the butt of everyone's jokes, so we're curious how the public will take to the AirPods Pro once they hit shelves on Oct. 30. 

Kate Kozuch

Kate Kozuch is the managing editor of social and video at Tom’s Guide. She covers smartwatches, TVs and audio devices, too. Kate appears on Fox News to talk tech trends and runs the Tom's Guide TikTok account, which you should be following. When she’s not filming tech videos, you can find her taking up a new sport, mastering the NYT Crossword or channeling her inner celebrity chef.