You can get all kinds of third-party accessories for the Apple AirPods and AirPods Pro, like a leather pouch that resembles a tiny briefcase. The PodChain Pro (opens in new tab) might be the most ambitious one yet: it’s a wearable charger that lets you top up your earbuds’ batteries while you’re still wearing them.
Created by plush accessories manufacturer M. Craftsman, the PodChain Pro initially looks questionable. Regardless of whether you’re using it with the AirPods or AirPods Pro, it’s making some of the best wireless earbuds…wired. Yet it does address the central issue of using the bundled charging cases, which is that the AirPods need to be docked to recharge, so you can’t keep listening as they fill up.
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The PodChain Pro instead connects the power bank, which is worn around the neck, to the AirPods or AirPods Pro via braided cables. So the buds themselves are still paired to your phone by Bluetooth, and you can always detach the cables once the AirPods are recharged.
The earbuds magnetically latch onto little charging sheaths that slip onto the earbuds’ stalks, so it’s just a matter of pulling the cable away to detach them.
M. Craftsman’s launch materials also talk up the benefits of added wires making your AirPods harder to lose. But it’s the ability to recharge without interrupting your music that really makes the PodChain Pro a unique, even intriguing proposition. The power bank can apparently fully recharge both the AirPods or AirPods Pro three times, for up to 16 hours of non-stop playback. That’s a lot more practical than a miniature briefcase.
The kicker is that the PodChain Pro isn’t out yet; it’s “launching” on crowdfunding site Indiegogo on February 23. M. Craftsman is confident of getting fully funded, though, as it’s already set an MSRP of $69. The first 100 units will also be sold as Indiegogo backer rewards at a discounted $39.