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Apple Unveils Over-Ear AirPods

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You might need to choose between these and a new phone, though.

For reasons that I don’t care to go into detail on, my ears aren’t compatible with ear buds. I can only listen to music with over-ear headphones, but while there’s certainly no shortage of good headphones on the market, it’s a little disappointing to miss out on the sheer style factor afforded to those who use Apple’s AirPods. If you’re like me and want a powerful, trendy pair of headphones, then here’s some news you may find interesting.

Today, Apple officially unveiled and released their first over-ear AirPods, the AirPods Max. No, they are not headphones, they’re “over-ear AirPods.” Get it right. The AirPods Max form a perfect seal over the ear, providing clean, superior sound quality and noise cancelling. Additionally, they’ve got all of the bells and whistles you’d expect from the regular AirPods, including nine microphones, two H1 audio-processor chips, a 20-hour battery life, and auto-adjusting audio levels that account for things like ambient noise.

Really, they’re just a stellar pair of headphones- sorry, over-ear AirPods, but before you rush out to place your order, there’s one major component that may give you pause: the price. One pair of AirPods Max costs $549. That’s more than double the price of the regular AirPods, not to mention more than the tags on some lower-tier Apple smartphones. Even the closest competitor to these speakers, Bose’s 700 series, only cost $340 (at least during holiday sales).

According to Apple’s most recent sales statistics, sales of full-on iPhones are down by about 20%, while sales of accessories like AirPods are up 16%, a $53.8 billion valuation. Whether it be due to the pandemic or some other invisible factor, the writing’s on the wall: ear buds and headphones are selling gangbusters.

While the AirPods Max have technically released already, they’re going to need some time to ship. If you order a pair, expect them to begin shipping around next Tuesday.