Apple now makes three sets of wireless earbuds that use its H1 chip: The AirPods, the AirPods Pro, and the Powerbeats Pro from its Beats division.

That H1 chip means easy pairing to your iPhone, hands-free Siri, automatic pairing with all your Apple devices through iCloud, and better power management. If you have an iPhone, you probably want earbuds with it. Which of the three is best?

That answer is, overall, the AirPods Pro. But maybe the better question is: which of the three is the best one for YOUR needs?

AirPods: The cheaper option for calls and podcasts

AirPods are now on their second generation, with slightly improved battery life and hands-free Siri support. And now that the AirPods Pro are out there, I don’t think there’s much reason for anyone to buy them. The AirPods Pro are so much better and definitely worth the higher price. AirPods don’t have tips to create a seal in your ear, and that means lesser sound quality, more outside noise, and they can fall out more easily.

They are the cheapest option, though. With a wired charging case instead of the wireless one (which you really don’t need), AirPods cost $159. And you can occasionally find them on sale.

The best reason to buy regular AirPods is if you just want something you can quickly pop into your ear to answer a phone call, or if you only want to listen to spoken word stuff like podcasts. If that’s all you care about, save yourself some money and get the regular AirPods.

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AirPods Pro: Best for most users

If music sound quality is a priority, or you spend any time in an environment where you wish you could have a little more quiet, or if you work out often, you’re going to want to step up to the AirPods Pro.

Yeah, they’re more expensive than AirPods. They only come with a wireless charging case and cost $250. That’s $90 more than basic AirPods and $50 more than AirPods with a wireless charging case.



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