Apple is expected to introduce its next generation of truly wireless stereo (TWS) earphones in 2024. It is said to succeed the AirPods (3rd Generation) earbuds, which were launched in October 2021. The company is expected to bring significant upgrades including design changes to the purported fourth generation of Apple AirPods. Recent reports suggest that Apple will launch two versions of the AirPods (4th Generation) at two different price points. Analyst Mark Gurman explains why the firm is likely to attempt a complete overhaul of its current TWS earbuds offering range.
In his latest weekly newsletter, Power On, Gurman explains that Apple is in a bit of a pickle with its range of AirPods. There is very little difference, save the design, between the AirPods (2nd Generation) which are priced at Rs. 12,900, and AirPods (3rd Generation), which start at Rs. 19,900. Customers, therefore, more often than not opt for the cheaper option, costing the company money.
Gurman notes that Apple plans to mitigate this issue by launching two new fourth-generation non-Pro AirPods models. The earbuds are expected to get new designs, revamped cases, and USB Type-C charging support. The higher-end version of the two models is also expected to include active noise cancellation (ANC), which is currently only offered on the AirPods Pro and Max models.
Earlier, Gurman tipped that with the launch of the fourth generation of AirPods, the second and third generations will be discontinued. He added that the new earbuds will likely feature shorter stems and their cases will support USB Type-C charging. Alongside improved audio performance and new design, the earbuds are also expected to offer a better fit. However, it is unclear whether the company will offer silicone ear tips.
The redesigned case of the fourth generation of AirPods will also likely include speakers for Find My alerts. The new earbuds may launch around September 2024 when Apple is also likely to unveil its new series of iPhone models. The company may also refresh the AirPods Max headphones soon, according to the analyst, but it is unlikely to get any major hardware or software upgrades. It could be introduced in newer colour options and with a USB Type-C port. Apple has also been tipped previously to launch a new AirPods Max model in 2025.