The first third-party cases and hangers for AirPods Max containing magnets, that allow users to avoid using Apple’s Smart Case, are now available for purchase.
Apple’s Smart Case contains magnets that put AirPods Max into a low power mode to preserve battery life. After 18 hours in the Smart Case, the AirPods Max go into an ultra-low power mode that turns off Bluetooth and Find My.
AirPods Max have no power button, with Apple instead relying on different power modes and the Smart Case to preserve battery life. Yet the Smart Case has come under fire for its design, which some customers have criticized for offering very little protection and being impractical, and without using it, AirPods Max take longer to enter its low-power state.
Amid these criticisms, third-party companies have begun presenting solutions to address the criticisms of the Smart Case. WaterField Designs’ protective “Shield Case” for AirPods Max, unlike Apple’s Smart Case which only partially covers each AirPods Max ear cup, cradles the entire headset in an ultra-plush interior and offers three layers of protection. There is also an interior pocket to carry a charging brick, waterproof zippers, and a loop to attach the case to a carabiner.
The WaterField Shield Case contains a “Magnetic Leather Butterfly” that puts AirPods Max into their low power mode without Apple’s Smart Case, but it is also possible to fold down these magnets to put AirPods Max together with their Smart Case into the Shield Case too.
On Etsy, a 3D-printed AirPods Max “Air Hanger” similarly uses magnets to put the headphones into low power mode without the Smart Case. The wall-mounted hanger allows AirPods Max to be hung at any band length, with a curved lip to prevent the headphones from sliding off.