Apple's signature headphone series isn't getting any new hardware announced today, but that doesn't mean that there's nothing to talk about. With the advent of iOS 15 and iPad OS 15, AirPods are getting handy new features that more fully integrate them with Apple's ecosystem, and new onboard features that make them work better all on their own.
If you have trouble with focusing on conversations, an update to AirPods Pro will allow a "conversation boost," which cancels out ambient noises and focuses in on conversations for those around you. Apple specifically mentioned that this will be useful for those with light hearing difficulty, and the feature sounds a lot like a low-power hearing aid.
AirPods of all make are getting more tightly integrated with the Siri voice assistant. In iOS 15, Siri can send time- and location-sensitive notifications to your AirPods, like reading out your grocery list when you arrive at the supermarket. These settings can be changed manually, but will automatically follow settings in Do Not Disturb or the new Focus feature. That's on top of new location finding tools, a la the AirTag, which will work with AirPods Pro and Max.
Finally, Spatial Audio for faux surround sound is coming to AirPods Pro and Max when connected to TVOS or Mac laptops and desktops using the new M1 chips and (and presumably anything that comes after). To help show off this new feature, iTunes will get select albums from notable artists that feature Dolby Atmos encoding.