Apple's 2nd-generation AirPods are official, and you can order them now

Jacob Krol, CNN Underscored
Updated Thu March 21, 2019

AirPods finally have a successor, nearly two years later, and the good news is you don't have to wait any longer to get them. Apple has opened up orders for second-generation AirPods with a wireless charging case or with a standard charging case, as well as a wireless charging case for original AirPods. All of these are available to order online now and will arrive in stores next week. For more details on Apple's new AirPods, check out CNN Business for a look at how this fits with the tech giant's broader product line and the industry effects.

Here's the full pricing breakdown and links to purchase. Given the popularity of AirPods, we'd recommend ordering sooner rather than later.

  • AirPods with wireless charging case ($199.99; amazon.com)
  • AirPods with charging case ($159.99; amazon.com)
  • Wireless charging case for AirPods ($79.99; amazon.com)

Looking for more on Apple's upcoming March 25 "It's Show Time" event? Keep your eyes locked on CNN Business for play-by-play reporting during the event, and in-depth analysis before and after.

With three new products, it might be a little hard to decide, so let's break down the changes. Essentially, the second-generation AirPods have a new Apple-designed H1 chip inside that improves the product as a whole. You can now use "Hey Siri" and expect faster pairing time and improved battery life. It should smooth out the sometimes finicky process of having AirPods quickly switch from your Apple Watch to your iPhone to your Mac and even your iPad.

The original charging case that doubles as a charger and extra battery is still around. But there's also a new wireless charging case which adds in a Qi chip and an LED light on the front for easy charge status. That's about it, and it's available as a new case for original AirPods at $79. The wireless charging functionality should work with almost any wireless charging pad. And you guessed it, still no update on Apple's promised AirPower wireless charging mat.

So yes, there are some new features like "Hey Siri" voice activations, improved performance and longer talk time that are reserved for the new AirPods with wireless charging case or standard charging case. If those don't appeal to you, and your original AirPods are working just fine, then the wireless charging case for AirPods is likely the best option.

Note: The prices above reflect the retailer's listed price at the time of publication.