AirPods Max back-ordered, but don't expect new model

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 23
Customers trying to order AirPods Max won't get them for two to three weeks, but that doesn't mean updated models are coming soon.

AirPods Max are Apple's premium over-the-ear headphones
AirPods Max are Apple's premium over-the-ear headphones


It may be tempting to look at shipment times for an indication of Apple's upcoming product announcements, but they are usually a red herring. AirPods Max ship dates slipping a few weeks could be for a number of reasons, but the least likely is impending new releases.

Apple is on the verge of a major port transition as the European Union has made USB-C a requirement for new devices produced after 2023. This, along with the long update cycle of the original AirPods Max, easily leads to speculation about an upcoming product announcement.

However, Ming-Chi Kuo has already put his stake in the ground for a refresh in late 2024. That's a four-year update cycle, but one Apple isn't averse to considering the HomePod's recent 5-years later update.

A report from 9to5Mac was the first to catch the slipping ship dates. The publication speculates that it could be due to a new color launch, not a full device refresh.

New colors wouldn't be the most unusual thing, as Apple has added new color options to products like HomePod mini mid-cycle before. But those types of updates usually occur sooner in a product's life cycle, not at the end.



If AirPods Max are due for an update by the end of 2024, a new colorway for the ultra-premium headphones could be a bad option for the market. Customers would surely react negatively to purchasing a new colorway only to have the USB-C model released a year or so later.

Out of all the possible explanations, the shipment delay is most likely due to supply chain interruptions. Although, a new colorway can't be completely ruled out, as that is harder for leakers like Ming-Chi Kuo to find and report on.

For now, AirPods Max remain available, at some delay, for as low as $449 (up to $100 off) at resellers in our AirPods Price Guide.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 8
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,898member
    I guess that is a bit of a bummer, as I’m kind of in the market for such a product (though need to save up a bit more). I had hoped we’d see AirPods Pro 2 type improvements. I’m curious though, what owners of them think needs to be fixed/updated on this 1st gen, aside from that. I also wonder if they could software-update some of that Airpods Pro 2 improvement, but I suppose it would need the new chips.

    Late 2024 is still quite a way off, yet. Bummer.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 8
    JapheyJaphey Posts: 1,463member
    cgWerks said:
    I guess that is a bit of a bummer, as I’m kind of in the market for such a product (though need to save up a bit more). I had hoped we’d see AirPods Pro 2 type improvements. I’m curious though, what owners of them think needs to be fixed/updated on this 1st gen, aside from that. I also wonder if they could software-update some of that Airpods Pro 2 improvement, but I suppose it would need the new chips.

    Late 2024 is still quite a way off, yet. Bummer.
    Assuming the 2nd gen model gets the same AirPods Pro 2 upgrades, there are really only a few things I would personally like fixed. First, USB-C. Second, they could be a bit lighter. And third, they absolutely need a better case. Many will say they want lossless support, but that’s not as important to me. 

    This article makes it seem like they are nearing the end of the line. But, in reality, they are only barely past midway of their rumored 4 year cycle. I say go for it, you won’t regret it. And if you do, at least you have 2 years until you have to worry about it. 
    cgWerkswatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 8
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,898member
    Japhey said:
    Assuming the 2nd gen model gets the same AirPods Pro 2 upgrades, there are really only a few things I would personally like fixed. First, USB-C. Second, they could be a bit lighter. And third, they absolutely need a better case. Many will say they want lossless support, but that’s not as important to me. 

    This article makes it seem like they are nearing the end of the line. But, in reality, they are only barely past midway of their rumored 4 year cycle. I say go for it, you won’t regret it. And if you do, at least you have 2 years until you have to worry about it. 
    Thanks for the feedback! That’s mostly the stuff I’ve heard so far, too. The Lightning/USB-C thing isn’t a huge deal to me. I’d probably mostly use them at home, so the case isn’t huge either (I think). Lighter would be good, as that is a concern for extended use. How do you feel about fit/clamping force compared to typical headsets out there? I don’t have a lot of experience… I’ve just used gaming ones or a few times $100-$200 studio type ones (Sony, etc.).

    The main thing would be enhanced Transparency mode, as that is what I mostly use on my AirPods Pro, but it is good-enough as it is, as much as I’d enjoy it being even better. I don’t think I’ve heard of any reliability issues with them, like HomePods or my AirPods Pro (which I’m kind of ticked off about).
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 8
    Take your time on AirPods Max 2.0, Apple. Do something impressive.

    Your barely changed HomePods 2.0 pretty much ended my interest in smart speakers.
  • Reply 5 of 8
    JapheyJaphey Posts: 1,463member
    cgWerks said:
    Japhey said:
    Assuming the 2nd gen model gets the same AirPods Pro 2 upgrades, there are really only a few things I would personally like fixed. First, USB-C. Second, they could be a bit lighter. And third, they absolutely need a better case. Many will say they want lossless support, but that’s not as important to me. 

    This article makes it seem like they are nearing the end of the line. But, in reality, they are only barely past midway of their rumored 4 year cycle. I say go for it, you won’t regret it. And if you do, at least you have 2 years until you have to worry about it. 
    Thanks for the feedback! That’s mostly the stuff I’ve heard so far, too. The Lightning/USB-C thing isn’t a huge deal to me. I’d probably mostly use them at home, so the case isn’t huge either (I think). Lighter would be good, as that is a concern for extended use. How do you feel about fit/clamping force compared to typical headsets out there? I don’t have a lot of experience… I’ve just used gaming ones or a few times $100-$200 studio type ones (Sony, etc.).

    The main thing would be enhanced Transparency mode, as that is what I mostly use on my AirPods Pro, but it is good-enough as it is, as much as I’d enjoy it being even better. I don’t think I’ve heard of any reliability issues with them, like HomePods or my AirPods Pro (which I’m kind of ticked off about).
    I actually don’t experience any clamping at all with them. But, to be honest, they are my first pair of premium headphones so I can’t really compare them to anything else. But I can say that they sound amazing and that I wear them for long periods of time and forget they’re even on. I only suggest a lighter gen 2 model because I’m anticipating wearing them with whatever AR device Apple eventually releases. 

    As for the case…if you decide not to use it, I would definitely recommend a stand to keep them looking good. 
    cgWerks
  • Reply 6 of 8
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,898member
    Japhey said:
    I actually don’t experience any clamping at all with them. But, to be honest, they are my first pair of premium headphones so I can’t really compare them to anything else. But I can say that they sound amazing and that I wear them for long periods of time and forget they’re even on. I only suggest a lighter gen 2 model because I’m anticipating wearing them with whatever AR device Apple eventually releases. 

    As for the case…if you decide not to use it, I would definitely recommend a stand to keep them looking good. 
    Thanks, again. Yeah, a stand would be nice. I’m a glasses wearer, so maybe the ‘clamping’ is more an issue as they tend to push on the glasses bows. I’ve experienced it with any I’ve worn, just to more or lesser extent. Good to hear you find them comfortable, though. If you don’t mind another question… have you used the mic on them much, and do people say they sound good?

    I love my AirPods Pro, but one bad point is the mics. They really don’t sound that terrific to the person on the other end, and it’s almost like they magnify background noise, such that I’ve had people complain that it was really bad. From some of the audio samples of the AirPods Pro 2, they sound *way* better, though I’m not sure about background noise yet. Curious how AirPods Max work in that regard.
  • Reply 7 of 8
    JapheyJaphey Posts: 1,463member
    cgWerks said:
    Japhey said:
    I actually don’t experience any clamping at all with them. But, to be honest, they are my first pair of premium headphones so I can’t really compare them to anything else. But I can say that they sound amazing and that I wear them for long periods of time and forget they’re even on. I only suggest a lighter gen 2 model because I’m anticipating wearing them with whatever AR device Apple eventually releases. 

    As for the case…if you decide not to use it, I would definitely recommend a stand to keep them looking good. 
    Thanks, again. Yeah, a stand would be nice. I’m a glasses wearer, so maybe the ‘clamping’ is more an issue as they tend to push on the glasses bows. I’ve experienced it with any I’ve worn, just to more or lesser extent. Good to hear you find them comfortable, though. If you don’t mind another question… have you used the mic on them much, and do people say they sound good?

    I love my AirPods Pro, but one bad point is the mics. They really don’t sound that terrific to the person on the other end, and it’s almost like they magnify background noise, such that I’ve had people complain that it was really bad. From some of the audio samples of the AirPods Pro 2, they sound *way* better, though I’m not sure about background noise yet. Curious how AirPods Max work in that regard.
    I use them mostly for music and movies, so my experience with the microphones are limited. But based on the feedback I’ve received after the few times I did use them, it barely sounds like I’m using headphones. There was a slight muffle from background noise, but mostly only noticeable when actively listening for it. The result was consistent both on a noisy train and in my quiet house. Hope that helps. 
    cgWerks
  • Reply 8 of 8
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,898member
    Japhey said:
    cgWerks said:
    I use them mostly for music and movies, so my experience with the microphones are limited. But based on the feedback I’ve received after the few times I did use them, it barely sounds like I’m using headphones. There was a slight muffle from background noise, but mostly only noticeable when actively listening for it. The result was consistent both on a noisy train and in my quiet house. Hope that helps. 
    Thanks, that sounds very positive in comparison to the AirPods Pro. I’ve gotten so many complaints, I’ve started taking them out for calls if I’m anywhere even a bit noisy. Which kind of defeats the purpose. I don’t know if this is everyone’s experience, or if it has something to do with mine having that ‘clicking’ issue, and it is also impacting the mics somehow. Disappointing for such an expensive product. (When I’ve heard people do test recordings with AirPods Pro, they sound kind of bad, but I don’t notice what people complain about. But, I’m also assuming those tests aren’t with papers rustling nearby, etc.)

    I’d even consider another purchase of AirPods Pro 2, just because I like them in concept so much, but I’m thinking at least when at home, I’d get more overall use out of AirPods Max if it solved both ‘office’ and stereo-system needs.
    edited January 27
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