After the success of AirPods, Apple is now reportedly working on a pair of high-end over-ear headphones that will take on the likes of Bose, Sennheiser and Sony.
According to a report in Bloomberg, these Apple-branded headphones could arrive before the end of this year. However the development process has been marred with issues, which might force the release to next year.
“Work on the Apple headset has been on-and-off over the past year. The company encountered similar problems with the HomePod during its development, including multiple redesigns, according to the people. It’s possible Apple will redesign the headphones again before launch, or scrap the project altogether, they warned, asking not to be identified discussing private development work,” wrote Bloomberg.
The specifics of Apple headphones are a mystery, but Bloomberg report does add that the headphones will include noise-cancelling capabilities as well as wireless pairing setup similar to AirPods.
Although Apple has been a huge player in the music industry with its iPod, iTunes, and Apple Music for the better part of the last two decades, it has had limited involvement in the audio accessories market apart from the portfolio that came with Beats acquisition.
As smartphone market stagnates, Apple is looking at other product categories to grab a pie from. The headphone market may not be as big as the phone market, but according to Research and Markets, it will generate $20 billion in annual revenue by 2023. The Apple AirPods and Beats headphones already account for 27 percent of the wireless headphone market, an Apple-branded high-end headphones could further cement the company’s position.
There is no word on the pricing of Apple headphones at this point, but it is likely to hover around $300-400, which is the price-point targeted by most other high-end headphone manufacturers.