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AirPods 3 release date leak: Here's when it could arrive

Apple Airpods Pro
(Image credit: Laptop Mag)

When will the AirPods 3 come out? What will it look like?

Respected Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo answered both of our pressing questions about the next-gen Apple AirPods in a research note to investors obtained by MacRumors (via BGR).

Kuo, known to be a reliable leaker, predicted that the AirPods 3 will borrow some attractive design features from the AirPods Pro.

When will AirPods 3 come out?

The AirPods 3, according to Kuo, will be released sometime during the first half of 2021. 

The second-generation AirPods was released in March 2019, so many analysts believe that AirPods 3 could hit store shelves during the same season next year.

This release date window means the official AirPods 3 announcement could potentially take place during a special March Apple event or during WWDC 2021 in June.

It's also worth noting that, according to BGR, early reports leaked that Apple was planning to release the AirPods 3 this year, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Cupertino-based giant decided to push back the release date to next year.

What will the AirPods 3 look like?

The AirPods 3 will reportedly mimic the AirPods Pro design.

When AirPods 2 debuted last year in March, it featured always-listening Hey Siri voice activation and a wireless charging case option, but the design looked similar to the original AirPods.

This time, the AirPods 3 will likely adopt the AirPods Pro's best design features, including shorter stems and gel tips.

As of this writing, details about the AirPods 3 are still hazy. The unofficial name indicates that it could be the successor to the current-gen AirPods, but Kuo may very well be talking about the AirPods Lite -- the rumored budget-friendly version of Apple's AirPods.

We're crossing our fingers for another revealing leak to provide more clarity about Apple's upcoming AirPods.