A new approach to Apple AirPods 2 is expected to be released within the next few months, but a recent report from a top Apple analyst suggests that a completely new approach will be implemented.
However, a recent tweet from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo hints at an imminent end to the current version of AirPods Pro. Because of the AirPods’ decline in sales, according to Kuo, that’s the main reason why. Even though AirPods 3 were released last year, Apple kept the second-generation models on sale at a significantly reduced cost. According to Kuo, this has resulted in a “failed product segmentation strategy,” and Apple has reduced production of the latest model because “demand for AirPods 3 is significantly weaker than for AirPods 2.”
This is because “consumers are not willing to spend an additional $50 for the new selling points of AirPods 3,” according to Kuo. In other words, if Kuo is correct, customers aren’t upgrading to the $179 third-generation AirPods because of the new lower price of the $129 second-generation models.
Re-pricing the AirPods Pro was done to make money, but “AirPods Pro may be discontinued after Apple launches AirPods Pro 2 in 2H22 to avoid repeating the same mistake.” Apple has always maintained that it doesn’t mind cannibalising sales when customers choose another of its products.
If this is the case, Apple will follow the same strategy it used when it released the second generation of AirPods, dropping the first version immediately after the release date was announced. Despite the fact that the first two generations of AirPods were priced the same, the third generation saw an increase in price, resulting in the large price difference.
As Kuo puts it, this is a “wake-up call for AirPods”: the company plans to discontinue the AirPods Pro when the Pro 2 is released.
There’s more to come. “AirPods may only cost $249 at best without more innovative features,” Kuo claims. This is a reference to the AirPods Pro, which are significantly more expensive than any previous version of the ‘Pods. Furthermore, the meaning is a little hazy. There is no reason why Apple would release new Pro earbuds without adding new features, even though the price is probably right. There have been a lot of rumours about new features, such as new health capabilities, for the upcoming Pros.
Kuo reiterates that the release date will be sometime in the second half of 2022, as he has previously predicted. In my opinion, Apple’s AirPods Pro 2 will be available in September or October at the latest, marking the end of the line for the original AirPods Pro earbuds.