Apple is said to be developing modular over-ear wireless headphones, according to a report by Bloomberg. People familiar with the matter told the news agency that the Cupertino-based company is aiming to incorporate a high-end audio product to its successful AirPods business.
The report states that prototypes of the headphones features a retro-like aesthetic with oval ear cups that swivel, and a headband connected by thin metal arms. Apple is said to be working on at least two variations of the audio device; a premium version with leather-like finish, and a fitness oriented model that uses lighter yet breathable materials.
In terms of modular parts, the sources said that its ear pads and headband padding are magnetically attached, thus allowing them to be switched out with ease. It is suggested that this approach will allow users to customise it from comfort to fitness, and back again. Additionally, it will feature similar wireless-pairing and noise-cancellation technology found on the AirPods Pro, as well as integrated touch controls and voice commands via Siri.
The sources added that the modular headphones have been in development since at least 2018, but its progress has been delayed at least twice. Apple is said to have the new product launched later this year, but is likely to delay it yet again due to the COVID-19 crisis.
Interestingly, it’s also said that the audio device aims to compete with high-end offerings from Bose, Sennheiser, and Sony which currently retails at an average of US$350 (~RM1,525). An Apple spokesperson declined to comment on the product when approached by Bloomberg.
Rumours of a first-party wireless over-ear headphones from the iPhone maker has been making its rounds on the internet for a while now. However, this newly discovered focus on modular parts and high-end audio appears to be something worth looking forward to for Apple fans and audio enthusiasts alike. That is, if the information provided by these sources are proven to be true.
(Source: Bloomberg | Header image: Beats Studio 3)