It will be interesting to see what Apple has planned next when the time comes, the current improvements sound good, but I would like to see water resistance added to the mix. Apple's current W1 chip, found inside both AirPods and select Beats headphones, will turn two years old this year so it would make sense to see the company give it an upgrade.
When Apple launched the iPhone 7, it created and solved its own unique problem in one swoop, removing the headphone jack and offering iPhone owners the Airpods in its place.
If you've been holding out on buying the AirPods since they were first released in late 2016, it might be worthwhile to wait a bit longer. The new model will also sport an updated wireless chip for improved BLuetooth connections. Changing that to support the "Hey Siri" command will bring AirPods in line with interacting with Apple's voice assistant on iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and HomePod.
Now, coming to the second major upgrade to the AirPods; Apple is aiming to make the wireless earphones survive against splashes of water and rain. However, this version of the AirPods won't be created to survive being submerged underwater.
During the company's conference call earlier this month, Apple CFO Luca Maestri told analysts and investors that "wearables were the second-largest contributor to revenue growth after iPhone" and that sales had increased by nearly 70 percent during the past year. This pair could launch as soon as early 2019, but in both cases, these sources say that launch could be delayed beyond what Apple is now targeting.
The first-generation AirPods are not listed as being water resistant but it's created to be used while users are working up a sweat during jogs or other workouts.