If the reports prove to be true, these high-end AirPods will be noise-cancelling and water resistant. We can also expect to see studio-quality over-ear headphones and a refresh of the HomePod in early 2019.
Now that we’ve all got used to the iPhone no longer having a headphone jack, Apple decided it’s time to start offering us higher end (read: more expensive) audio equipment. If the rumors are to be believed, that means new AirPods and premium headphones.
As Bloomberg reports, it is thought that Apple is working on three new audio products. The first is a high-end set of AirPods expected to arrive in 2019. While the existing AirPods will be refreshed later this year with hands-free access to Siri, we’ll be waiting until 2019 for the premium version. The main selling point will be the addition of noise cancellation. Water resistance and increased range are also likely, but the standard AirPods should get both of those features this year.
Next up is new, studio-quality over-ear headphones. They are expected to be Apple branded and a direct competitor to the high-end headphones offered by Bose and Sennheiser. Apple is also thought to be positioning them as an alternative to the Beats range if you want the ultimate in sound quality. Again, it looks as though we’ll be waiting until 2019 to get our hands on these.
Finally we have the HomePod. There has been low demand for the first generation HomePod, but clearly Apple isn’t giving up on the smart speaker. We should expect a second-generation model to appear early next year. The HomePod sound quality is already excellent, so maybe/hopefully Apple is focusing its efforts elsewhere for the refresh.
One final note on the AirPods suggests Apple wants the tiny earbuds to do even more. Internally there’s thought to be talk of health-related biometric sensors. It could be that future AirPods double as a heart-rate monitor, for example.