Apple’s popular over-ear AirPods Max headphones are facing supply constraints. According to estimates listed on Apple’s website, AirPods Max orders are currently back ordered until mid-February. The shortages appear to affect all five AirPods Max color variants…

Currently, if you place an AirPods Max order via the Apple Store Online, the company says you can expect that order to arrive sometime between February 7 and February 14. If you want to get your hands on AirPods Max sooner than that, you can try your luck at Apple Stores, but even availability at physical stores in most major cities is limited at the moment.

There’s no obvious reason why AirPods Max shipping times have randomly slipped by as far out as three weeks. Following some supply constraints after their initial release, AirPods Max have been widely in stock from Apple as well as third-party retailers.

AirPods Max were first released in December of 2020, so they are due for an upgrade by Apple’s standards. Sometimes supply constraints can be an indication of a looming product update. Reliable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo recently reported that Apple is reading a second-generation version of AirPods Max, but that a release isn’t expected until sometime in 2024.

One possibility here is that Apple isn’t imminently planning a full refresh for AirPods Max, but it is planning to release new colors. That could explain why supply is constrained at the moment, without a looming second-generation launch. Seasonal color changes are something we’ve seen Apple do with other products, like Apple Watch bands and the HomePod mini.

But for now, we wouldn’t read too much into the AirPods Max shipping delays. It’s likely just a supply chain hiccup that Apple will resolve soon. And if you are planning to buy AirPods Max, you can get them at lower prices and with faster shipping through Amazon.

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About the Author

Chance Miller

Chance is an editor for the entire 9to5 network and covers the latest Apple news for 9to5Mac.

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