A new LC3 codec for AirPods Max discovered in the iOS 16 beta may pave the way for better battery life and sound quality.
As noted before shrimpOne of the iOS 16 beta users has found a new LC3 audio codec that can be enabled to improve the sound quality of Apple’s AirPods Max. Twitter user George who found the feature appears to have reported a noticeable improvement in audio quality, but ShrimpApplePro notes that this may be limited by current AirPods Max SiP, and could benefit more from future AirPods Pro models with better hardware.
LC3 is a new Bluetooth Low Energy audio codec. The LC3 codec is more efficient while using less power and lower latency compared to the current codec. It works at different bit rates, so it can be added to any Bluetooth audio profile, so companies like Apple can take advantage of it to get longer battery life and better sound from wireless audio devices. According to Bluetooth Lc3 it provides much higher quality at the same data rates as SBC or better quality at much lower data rates.
If Apple adds this to iOS 16 for future use, it will be a welcome upgrade for AirPods Max customers, dramatically increasing audio fidelity and performance while improving battery life in the premium headphones.
Unfortunately, this isn’t the leap we need to get wireless lossless audio to get a high-quality Apple Music experience, but it’s a huge one. Qualcomm claims to have developed Bluetooth technology that supports lossless audio, but that’s far from the consumer market now.
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