by Hartley Charlton
Apple's AirPods Max were released two years ago today, but rumors of a successor remain thin, so what exactly can we expect from AirPods Max 2?
After months of rumors, &zwnj ;AirPods Max started reaching customers two years ago, but now the device seems to be showing its age: the second-generation AirPods Pro adds a number of technological innovations not found in AirPods Max, such as Adaptive Transparency, IPX4-rated sweat and water. resistance, skin detection sensors, and a U1 chip for precise searching with Find My.
While it is likely that the next generation AirPods Max&zwnj will receive many of the above features, there were surprisingly few rumors about the device. In May 2021, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman stated that Apple was not actively working on the second generation AirPods Max, and previous talk of updating color options for the first generation seemed to have abated.
The last mention of the second generation model was Gurman's announcement in October that the next version of the AirPods Max will have USB-C and be released “by 2024”. Beyond this single feature, we don't have any specific rumors from reliable sources about what the new model might offer, but there is some evidence that could provide some interesting indications of what to expect.
In 2020 Gurman said that AirPods Max, which was called “AirPods Studio” at the time, ran into several development issues, such as problems with the headband being too tight, which resulted in numerous delays and reduced functionality. It seems plausible that after a few more years of iterating on aspects that didn't make it into the first version of the device, the second generation of AirPods Max may introduce some of these originally excluded features.
AirPods Max will offer unique customization options with interchangeable headbands and earpieces much like Apple Watch bands. Due to these delays and development issues, Bloomberg predicted that Apple would drop the interchangeable headband concept to speed up production.
Proof of this concept can be seen in the final version of AirPods Max design. Users can easily remove the headband from AirPods Max without taking the earbuds apart. To do this, users simply need to remove the magnetic ear pads, fold the ear cups, and insert the SIM eject tool into the small hole above the speaker.
Once the headphones are removed, the spokes on either side of the headband expose a small Lightning-style connector to transfer power and possibly data between the headphones. Perhaps this headband removal system is a holdover from the original, more modular approach to AirPods Max. The earcups are magnetically removable and can be easily changed to a different color.
Moreover, AirPods Max will have left and right ear detection so users can change the orientation of the headphones, as well as touch pads on the earcups for control. It appears to have been replaced by the Apple Watch Digital Crown in the final product.
There were also rumors that AirPods Max will be available in two variants, including a more affordable sports model. Liquor John Prosser has repeatedly stated that AirPods Max will be available in a $350 “sports variant” and a $599 “luxury variant”. While the Prosser's $599 price tag was not far from the $549 possible AirPods Max retail price, the cheaper $350 “sport option” has yet to surface. Apple may still release this minor version of AirPods Max sometime in the future.
Based on the information above, the AirPods Max supposed to offer some of these features:
Rumored to be exclusive to AirPods Max 2
- USB-C instead of Lightning
- New color options
Regular AirPods Max rumored, but missing
- Replaceable headband for additional visual customization options
- Auto-detect left and right ear
- Touch pads on ear cups for audio control
- Budget sports model< /li>
AirPods Pro features that AirPods Max could use
- H2 chips
- Up to two times better active noise cancellation
- Bluetooth 5.3 connectivity< /li>
- Adaptive transparency
- Talk boost
- Skin detection sensors
- IPX4-rated sweat and water resistance
- Extended battery life
- MagSafe charging
< li>U1 chip for precise Find My
At least one new AirPods product has been released every year since 2019. As of today, Apple seems to be waiting two and a half to three years to update every AirPods device, and since 2019, a different line of AirPods products has been updated every year. According to this template AirPods Max should be the next AirPods to receive the update, possibly sometime between June and November 2023.
- AirPods (first generation): September 2016
- AirPods (second generation): March 2019 (two years and six months after the previous generation)
- AirPods Pro (First Generation): October 2019
- AirPods Max: December 2020
- AirPods (Third Generation): October 2021 (two year and six months after the previous generation)
- AirPods Pro (Second Generation): September 2022 (two years and 11 months after the previous generation)
- AirPods Max (Second Generation): June to November 2023?< /li> < /ol>
Of course, Apple can wait even longer to update the device. Past launch dates don't always indicate Apple's plans for the future, but they can give you an idea of the models you can expect from the company. There is even a small chance that there are no plans to update the AirPods Max, as the product could suffer the same fate as the HomePod. It's just too early to talk about rumors at this time.
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