According to an exclusive new report from Bloomberg, Apple is set to launch several new audio products next year, including new high-end AirPods, a new HomePod, and studio-quality over-ear headphones.
Bloomberg’s sources say that Apple intends to update the AirPods range with noise-cancellation and water-resistance features, although the latter is said to be only enough to guard against perspiration or rain, so don’t expect to be able to swim in your AirPods just yet. The company is also planning to extend the range of AirPods so that they can be further away from an iOS device and still function.
It’s thought that the new-and-improved AirPods will cost more than the current versions, which are priced at $159 per pair. The source ventured that Apple might make the AirPods range available at different price points depending on the features, just as it does with its iPhone line-up.
Apple is also said by the source to be discussing adding biometric sensors to AirPods in future, including a heart-rate monitor of the type that has proved to be so successful, and occasionally life-saving, in the Apple Watch.
There will be an AirPods refresh later this year, the source says, including a new chip and hands-free Siri activation support.
Also in 2019, Apple is planning to launch new Apple-branded over-ear headphones that will be designed to compete in the market with high-end models from the likes of Bose and Sennheiser, and will be more of a high-end brand than the Beats range. These over-ear headphones are not expected to launch until next year.
Turning to HomePod now, and Bloomberg’s very informative source says that a new HomePod model will also be arriving next year, most likely built by Foxconn rather than the current manufacturer, Inventec, although the final decision on that has not yet been made.
Source: Apple to Unveil High-End AirPods, Over-Ear Headphones For 2019