Apple Has an AirPods Pro Problem

Posted on October 31, 2020 by Paul Thurrott in Apple, Music + Videos with 19 Comments

Apple’s customers are reporting that their AirPods Pro earbuds are suffering from static or crackling sound issues. Apple said it will replace AirPods Pro made before October 2020 for free.

“Apple has determined that a small percentage of AirPods Pro may experience sound issues,” an Apple support document notes. Affected units were manufactured before October 2020.”

According to Apple, some AirPods Pro customers report hearing crackling or static sounds that increase in loud environments, with exercise, or while talking on the phone. Additionally, the earbuds’ Active Noise Cancellation feature is sometimes not working as expected, with a loss of bass sound, or an increase in background sounds, such as street or airplane noise.

Apple said that impacted customers can get their AirPods Pro serviced or replaced directly through the company or via an Apple Authorized Service Provider.

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Comments (20)

20 responses to “Apple Has an AirPods Pro Problem”

  1. Nischi

    Happened to me, first the left ear, than 2 months later on the right one. easy enough to get them swapped for new ones tho.

  2. mikegalos

    Obviously, you're wearing it wrong.

  3. Saarek

    No issue on mine as of yet, still if the replacement programme is there then it's fine, these things happen.

  4. winner

    I just can't see spending that kind of money for something that has a 2-3 year shelf life and then the battery dies.

    I also prefer my earbuds are connected by a wire so that I can't lose them so easily.

    • jgraebner

      In reply to Winner:

      I thought I preferred ones with a wire too, but I bought a set of Galaxy Buds recently as I thought they would work well for the numerous conference calls I'm taking from home now since I could easily just use one. What I've discovered is that no longer having the wire in the way makes a big difference from a comfort standpoint, so I'm using them for exercise too.


      I will say that I do still prefer my Sony over-the-ear cans for listening to music while working or for watching TV or movies on my laptop or tablet. Might be related to the shape of my ears, but any earbuds tend to be uncomfortable for longer periods of use like that.

    • Paul Thurrott

      This is what horse owners said about the first cars.
      • nbplopes

        In reply to paul-thurrott:


        Well batteries used to be easily replaceable :)


        I don’t buy into this idea that batteries aren’t due to better tech.


        I understand that in the beginning of the last decade but I’m 99% sure that situation has not improved meanwhile because it does not maximize Apple profits and instead maximizes other efficiencies such as the use of the earth resources and a less negative environmental impact.

  5. behindmyscreen

    I have had this happen. Resetting them resolves it every time it has happened (maybe 3 times).


    I have had to get both buds replaced though due to issues with sound cancelation.

  6. briantlewis

    I had squeaking when I'd adjust the left earbud, but not the right. After walking through the symptoms they sent me out a replacement pair. Easy and recommended.

  7. Vladimir Carli

    I had this issue twice on the left airpod. It's annoying but one should acknowledge that apple service is pretty amazing. I got replacements home in both occasions in less than 48 hours.

  8. harrymyhre

    i can wear mine *all day* , no discomfort. Just don't lose track of that little charger. Never separate airpods from the charger.

  9. Username

    Is “issues” legalises or Apple-speak for “defects”?

  10. crownseven

    I had a set of these. Loved them until the noise cancelling stopped working. Decided to return them (thanks Costco).


    I will purchase another set once they iron out these issues. The noise cancelling makes them great for my bike commute.

  11. sethb

    I’ve had three replacement AirPod Pros so far. I bought them last November, first my right one started having a “rattle” that would only happen when either noise-canceling or transparency modes were enabled. Apple replaced it in April. Then in July that replacement AirPod Pro stopped holding a charge, so they replaced it again. Two weeks ago my left AirPod developed the same rattle, so now that has been replaced too.


    While the defects are certainly disappointing in a product at this price level, Apple has been very easy to work with remotely on the issues, overnighting the new ones to my house. I will say that pairing the new AirPod with the old one can be a frustrating experience, especially when they have differing firmware revisions. The Apple-supplied documentation only had pictures, not words, which isn’t very helpful either...

  12. RonV42

    3 of my friends that shelled out the $$$'s for these things are having this issue. Glad I stuck with my Jabra's.

  13. Sébastien Michel Harvey

    Happened to me, had to replace both AirPods... this isn't an issue that affect a small percentage of people lol... pretty much everyone has had these issues. That's why they're extending the warranty for so long, they know they f* up.

  14. halap3n0

    I bought 3 pairs for people in my family, 2 have had this issue. Pretty poor track record.

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