Apple Reportedly Working on Wireless Over-the-Ear Headphones

Appleā€™s in-ear AirPods

All Bloomberg noted is that Apple is planning to release them sometime before the end of 2018, though there's a chance the entire project could be scrapped between now and then. However, people familiar with the plans indicate that the company has faced development challenges that might push back the release.

Apple has not released AirPods' exact sales numbers; the product has been lumped in with Apple Watch and other products in the "Other Sales" category. As Bloomberg notes, Apple's HomePod costs about $100 more than a similar speaker from Sonos, so it's entirely possible it would mark up its headphones similarly.

Interestingly, the report says the headphones will bear the Apple logo.

Beats, Bose, Sennheiser, Sony and Skullcandy are the leading players in a headphone market that will generate $20 billion in annual revenue by 2023, almost doubling this year's projected sales, according to Research and Markets. Aside from noise-canceling functionality, the new headphones will reportedly have similar wireless pairing functionality to the AirPods. According to reports, Apple is seeking to capitalize off of the AirPods' success by launching its very own premium on-ear headphones. Speaking of, future revisions of Apple's wireless AirPods are expected to be water resistant and house a new wireless chip to enable Siri voice activation. However, unlike what some might expect, they won't be from Beats by Dre, a subsidiary of Apple.

Pricing will be key for the new Apple headphones.

A pair of wireless headphones, to rival those produced by Bose, Sennheiser, and Beats itself, seems like a logical step for Apple.

These Apple-branded headphones could also cannibalize Beats headphones, although Beats manages to sell lower-priced wireless headphones that probably won't directly compete with the new product.

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