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Apple removes iPhone Bluetooth Headset from online store

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
Apple's iPhone Bluetooth Headset has now been completely removed from the Apple online store, suggesting the company will cede the headset business to third parties or return with an improved version leveraging new features in iPhone Software 3.0.

The minimalist headset's removal followed a week-long period of its being listed as discontinued. AppleInsider has since received a couple of unconfirmed tips that suggest Apple may have recently recalled existing inventory of the iPhone Bluetooth Headset for undisclosed reasons.

Apple regularly discontinues its existing products to clear inventory for revised new models, so the delisting may suggest that the company is planning a new headset that takes advantage of improved Bluetooth features in the upcoming iPhone 3.0 Software release.

One new feature in iPhone 3.0 is support for A2DP (Advanced Audio Distribution Profile), a Bluetooth profile already supported in Mac OS X Leopard, which enables wireless stereo audio streaming to headsets, speakers, a car stereo, or similar outputs.

Existing A2DP stereo headsets are often regarded as battery hogs, but as the technology in supporting chipsets and power management improve, Apple may likely be considering the option of introducing a new stereo headset with playback controls and hands-free features, which would not only work on the iPhone, but also on the second generation iPod touch and the company's notebooks and Bluetooth enabled desktops.

An exit strategy?

It's also possible that Apple may want to cede the headset business to third party partners, just as it has previous stepped out of other businesses that were less than central to its hardware business.

In the 90s, Apple jumped out of the market for digital cameras, scanners, and printers. More recently, the company introduced and then discontinued its iPod Hi-Fi portable speaker system for the iPod, introduced in 2006 and then discontinued without a replacement the following year.

Apple's iPod Hi-Fi lasted a year on the market.

The company subsequently released a statement saying, "Apple has decided to focus priorities on the iPod and iPhone and will not be making more iPod Hi-Fi units. There are over 4,000 accessories in the iPod ecosystem and hundreds of speakers systems designed specifically for the iPod, which provide customers with a wide variety of options."
post #2 of 18
Apple knows where the money is, and it's not from headsets (and Apple oem parts are NOT cheap).
post #3 of 18
I still want an iPod Hi-Fi, even though it's not compatible with the iPhone.
post #4 of 18
Didn't AI already cover this nearly two weeks ago?
post #5 of 18
I have one and it sucks... Should have saved money and gotten a different brand. Great integration, but it doesn't stay put in my ear, the button is also hard to press. Really needs an over the ear clip or something and a button that when you push it, pushes the device into your ear instead of out of it. As a shareholder, I'm glad it is gone so they can focus on more important components. I doubt they will be coming out with a new one...
post #6 of 18
My guess? Probably a new Bluetooth headset with audio controls. It makes the most sense, really.
post #7 of 18
I think the fact that they did not ship a dual dock for the iPhone 3G and Bluetooth headset was a clear message that they weren't going to continue the current design.
I'm surprised it lasted this long.


Unfortunately, I think they are looking to exit this segment.
As we discussed here previously, bluetooth headsets have a stigma attached to them...self important people wear them to look important.
Apple probably doesn't want to be associated with that.
post #8 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post

As we discussed here previously, bluetooth headsets have a stigma attached to them...self important people wear them to look important.
Apple probably doesn't want to be associated with that.

Perhaps that was true few years ago, but with sets averaging $50, I am not sure if that's true anymore. I would feel like a loser if I had to walk around with one all the time.
post #9 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Galley View Post

I still want an iPod Hi-Fi, even though it's not compatible with the iPhone.

Then for what? Are you building an iGloo?
post #10 of 18
Bring on the new stereo bluetooth headset!
post #11 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

Bring on the new stereo bluetooth headset!

Agreed!

Actually, forget Bluetooth. Nothing would make a bigger impression than having an iConeofSilence!

I want the bubble over my head so I only have to listen to my calls, music, etc. Since the profile would mirror that of a mushroom - perhaps it could be called the iSchroom!
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post #12 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

Bring on the new stereo bluetooth headset!

They are already selling Altec Bluetooth stereo Headphones in the Apple Stores as of last week.....
post #13 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by ByronVanArsdale View Post

Agreed!
I want the bubble over my head so I only have to listen to my calls, music, etc. Since the profile would mirror that of a mushroom - perhaps it could be called the iSchroom!

Or iGlans!

Interesting handle Byron.
post #14 of 18
The iPod HiFi was a great product. I bought one at release and have used it every day. It sounds great and still looks brand new. I love it........more than my AppleTVs.
post #15 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post

I think the fact that they did not ship a dual dock for the iPhone 3G and Bluetooth headset was a clear message that they weren't going to continue the current design. I'm surprised it lasted this long.

Agreed, that was the writing on the wall. I think they realized before the launch of the iPhone 3G that they weren't competing in the BT headset market. I actually bought one on 7/11/08 along with my iPhone 3G, thinking that the improved hardware of the 3G would allow for improved performance over what most of the reviews of Apple's BT headset at the time suggested. Plus, the integration was really desirable (while Apple didn't offer a desktop dual dock, a dual dock cable was available). I struggled with the Apple BT headset for about three months before taking it back in frustration; it was just a crappy product.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post

Unfortunately [] bluetooth headsets have a stigma attached to them...self important people wear them to look important.

This may be generally true of people who walk around with BT headsets in their ears when they're clearly not even talking on the phonethey just look silly to me. But in some situations (e.g., while driving, cooking, or anything that requires the use of both hands), BT headsets are extremely convenient and much safer than the alternative.

"Be aware of wonder." ~ Robert Fulghum

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"Be aware of wonder." ~ Robert Fulghum

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post #16 of 18
I for one loved the Apple Bluetooth headset. It was the only one that actually got good reception and quality. Plus it actually fit my ear great. Then again I'm not wearing it jogging, I'm only wearing it in the car or while in my home office.

I tried the Jawbone first and hated it. Never fit quite right and the reception was just awful. If I put the iPhone in my left pocket and the Jawbone or even the Plantronics one in my right ear it was all full of static. I love how they say it's range is like 30 feet when it can't even go 3 feet from a left pocket to right ear. I know the Jawbone touts the fact that you can "mow the lawn while talking", but really? Do you really need to mow your yard while talking on the phone. Some things are best left separate. Next they'll be coming out with ways for you to edit videos while swimming.

Here's to hoping a new stereo Apple Bluetooth headset is on the way.
post #17 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

Bring on the new stereo bluetooth headset!

It seems like they should give it a try. Once iPhone OS 3.0, or whatever they call it, comes out, I'll be looking for some, though I doubt I would settle on an Apple one, we'll have to see what it looks like when and if it's announced. I'm eager to get rid of the headphone cord without having to resort to a doofy and fragile looking dongle.
post #18 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

It seems like they should give it a try. Once iPhone OS 3.0, or whatever they call it, comes out, I'll be looking for some, though I doubt I would settle on an Apple one, we'll have to see what it looks like when and if it's announced. I'm eager to get rid of the headphone cord without having to resort to a doofy and fragile looking dongle.


I am using a Scosche tz4/tz4r with my Motorola S9's, have to say its pretty good, the unit runs off the ipod battery, so is not too bulky, and it has those extra little side teeth, so once its in, in tends to stay in.



Reception is also pretty good, but I tend to keep it in a breast pocket, so its not far from the headphones, but it supports A2DP, so I don't get the phone out too much.

Will be interested to see what Apple come up with, in terms of hardware.
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