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Like AirPods but cans: Apple reportedly working on over-the-ear headphone

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Over-the-ear headphones would bring portable studio-quality, audiophile-level sound to Apple’s AirPod and HomePod lineup.

Apple is reportedly working on high-end over-the-ear headphones to round-out its in-ear AirPods and full-room HomePod audio accessory lineup.

This comes from Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities, who has an established pattern of gaining information from Apple’s suppliers and manufacturing partners.

From MacRumors:

Apple to have own-brand, high-end over-ear headphones with all-new design; to be as convenient as AirPods with better sound quality; shipments to begin 4Q18F at earliest; Primax & SZS will be the key suppliers & will benefit from high ASPs.

We believe that after AirPods and HomePod, Apple’s next addition will be high-end over-ear headphones, making its acoustic accessory lineup more complete. Existing suppliers Primax and SZS will be Apple’s partners on this new product. Primax will receive assembly orders on its familiarity with the acoustic business, and SZS is likely to use MIM technology advantages as leverage to become the exclusive or main MIM part supplier. The new headphones will be priced higher than AirPods and should help boost the business momentum of Primax as the assembly provider.

Having the teams that worked on AirPods and HomePod work on “StudioPods” (or “AirPods Pro” or “AirCans” or whatever Apple ends up calling the over-the-ear headphones…) makes the kind of sense that does. It would leverage existing hardware and software technologies and expertise and provide a more premium — aka higher average selling price (ASP) — product to continue the expansion of Apple’s wearables category.

A next-generation W1 (W2 is already in Apple Watch Series 3 doing a slightly different job), would provide for the same easy pairing with everything from Apple Watch to iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV, and HomePod-style engineering could make for one of the best listening experiences in its eventual price range.

Beats, which already has over-the-ear studio headphones with the original W1 chip in them could, like AirPods, round-out the Apple-branded offering providing greater diversity and price point for customers — and Apple.

I wonder how long it’ll be until a product like “StudioPods” (with cellular) could stream music directly, like Apple Watch, and truly become the next generation, invisible iPod?

AirPods: Ultimate Guide

  • Everything you need to know about AirPods
  • AirPods, Beats X, or PowerBeats 3?
  • Best way to buy AirPods
  • How to personalize AirPods
  • How to pair AirPods with W1
  • How to pair AirPods with Bluetooth
  • How to configure AirPods
  • How to use AirPods
  • How to use AirPods offline
  • How to clean AirPods
  • How to find lost AirPods

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