Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has published a new report detailing the new features to be expected on this year’s Apple AirPods Pro earbuds, according to 9to5Mac. One of which, Kuo claims, is the ability to support the company’s own first-party lossless audio format, known as ALAC (Apple Lossless Audio Codec).
For those unfamiliar, Apple’s codec supports up to 8 channels of audio at 16, 20, 24 and 32 bit depth with a maximum sample rate of 384kHz. Lossless music via ALAC was only recently added to Apple Music in May of last year, although the company notes that the maximum fidelity for the format on app is capped at 24-bit 192kHz.
There are currently no first-party Bluetooth audio devices that support this format so far. Therefore, this would become a major breakthrough for Apple if it does manage to include ALAC support on next-gen AirPods Pro, provided that this rumour is accurate. Unfortunately, Kuo did not detail what approaches the company is using to overcome Bluetooth technology’s current limitations which prevents lossless audio playback.
The analyst also says that the next-gen Apple earbuds would also sport a “new form factor design”, as well as new Find My features. In regards to the latter, both the new AirPods Pro and its charging case will be able to produce sounds to ping their locations to you.
It was not mentioned when we will be expecting this year’s high-end earbuds from Apple. And as with most unofficial information about any potentially upcoming products, there is a chance that the information given may end up as inaccurate in the end.