The new ones AirPods Pro with active noise cancellation started to be delivered to the first buyers on Wednesday (30). A year or two from now, it is likely that the battery life will not be as good anymore. What to do in this case? Change for new ones, of course: the iFixit disassembled Apple’s all-wireless headphones and found that they are practically impossible to repair.
Both the first and the second generation of AirPods had scored zero in repairability in iFixit due to the way they are built: because they use a lot of glue, there is no way to access or replace the internal components without damaging other parts. AirPods Pro are more expensive and have a new design with a smaller “leg”, but nothing has changed about the possibility of repairs.
Inside, AirPods Pro have an Apple H1 chip with Bluetooth 5.0, which allows you to quickly switch between iPhones, Macs and Apple Watches; a coin-shaped lithium battery made in Germany, similar to that of the Samsung Galaxy Buds; and a lot of glue to join the components. Each headphone is 5.4 grams, slightly heavier than the 4 grams of conventional AirPods.
The charging case of the AirPods Pro contains chips from Texas Instruments, NXP and Broadcom, the latter being responsible for the wireless charging module. The battery is made up of two cells and has a capacity of 519 mAh, more than the 398 mAh in the box of standard AirPods. According to Apple, AirPods Pro last up to 4:30 am with active noise cancellation, and the case extends autonomy for up to 24 hours.
According to iFixit, “despite being theoretically semi-repairable, the completely glued and non-modular design, as well as the lack of spare parts, make the repair impractical and uneconomical”. Therefore, the repairability index, which measures the possibility of repairing a product, was again 0/10. The only replaceable parts are the silicone tips, which cost $ 4.
Apple confirm that AirPods Pro are not repairable due to the size and construction process of the headphones. When the battery wears out, it is necessary to replace the product. This already happens with the model without active noise cancellation: in Brazil, the cost on each side of the AirPods in case of battery wear is R $ 259.
This is a common negative point of all wireless headphones. O Washington Post points out that Amazon Echo Buds are also not repairable, and that Microsoft also completely replaces Surface Earbuds when repairs are needed. The exception is due to Galaxy Buds – Samsung does not offer the option to change the battery, but it is possible to purchase parts for less than $ 30 unofficially.
Apple tells the Tecnoblog that AirPods Pro will be launched in the Brazilian market “by the end of the year”. The headphones have a suggested price of US $ 249 in the United States and R $ 2,249 in Brazil.