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Apple's AirPods lineup will gain several improvements later this year. This includes a new Conversation Boost feature to help people with mild hearing challenges. It also features integration with the Find My network to locate lost items and support for Spatial Audio on Apple TV in tvOS.
Announced at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference on Monday, the new Conversation Boost feature for AirPods is designed to help people with mild hearing challenges engage in conversation. It leverages computational audio and beamforming microphones to make it easier to hear.
Apple also revealed that AirPods will work with the expanded Find My network, which includes AirTag. Using a secure Bluetooth beacon, AirPods will relay their location to Apple's network and back to the Find My app.
AirPods in Find My will have proximity view so that users will find their specific location more easily. And users can send a "chirp" to the headphones that will also help locate them, available when AirPods are in their case or without.
Another new feature is a separation alert, which will prompt users if they leave their AirPods somewhere.
AirPods will also gain support for Spatial Audio in tvOS, giving watchers a full surround sound experience without disturbing the rest of the house. With Spatial Audio on Apple TV, users will simulate Dolby Atmos on streaming content without an elaborate speaker setup.
Finally, AirPods and iOS 15 will also announce notifications to users when their headphones are on. This will integrate with the new notification control and customization settings in iOS 15.
Follow all of WWDC 2021 with comprehensive AppleInsider coverage of the week-long event from June 7 through June 11, including details on iOS 15, iPadOS 15, watchOS 8, macOS Monterey and more.
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