Bad news if you’re one of the many people waiting to get your hands on Apple’s new AirPods: they won’t be ready this month. Apple previously promised a ‘late October’ release timeframe for the new wireless earbuds.
Apple broke the news to TechCrunch with the following statement:
“The early response to AirPods has been incredible. We don’t believe in shipping a product before it’s ready, and we need a little more time before AirPods are ready for our customers,” an Apple spokesperson said to TechCrunch.
AirPods were first announced back in September at the iPhone 7 event where the $159 wireless earphones were previewed ahead of a ‘late October’ release. Many have expected AirPods to go on sale as soon as tomorrow or Friday (or Monday at the latest) given the ‘late October’ promise and the timing of tomorrow’s Mac event.
While AirPods are meant in part to embrace the wireless future pushed by the iPhone 7 (which lacks a traditional headphone jack), the new earbuds are somewhat different than traditional Bluetooth earbuds too. For instance, they feature a dedicated W1 chip that makes pairing and switching between devices extremely easy compared to most Bluetooth speakers and headphones.
Apple has already released two products that include this W1 chip (Beats Solo3 and Powerbeats3 Wireless) with one more on the way (BeatsX).
Apple’s AirPods have generally been well received in early reviews with most criticism being aimed at the lack of volume controls without relying on Siri.
There’s no signal for how long to expect the delay to last, but I would be surprised if AirPods didn’t go on sale at some point in November. With that being said, AirPods will surely be supply constrained through the holiday quarter once available to purchase.