Apple to launch self-branded premium headphones by 2018-end

Sony WH-1000XM2 Review

Sony WH-1000XM2 ReviewIBTimes India Sami Khan

Although the plans could change, Apple is reportedly targeting a release that could be "as early as the end of this year".

Apple hopes to build on the success of its AirPods earbuds by introducing high-end headphones, according to a new report.

Apple's AirPods earphones have been a surprise hit. The product has gone through multiple revisions and will likely be redesigned again before launch or may even be scrapped altogether, according to people familiar with the matter. Apple acquired Beats three years ago for $3.2 billion-no small sum, obviously. Sony WH1000XM2 Wireless Bluetooth Headphones come with a set of advanced features such as noise cancelling with extra bass and much more.

It's clear that Apple wants to pin a premium price tag on the headphones but finding that sweet spot among offerings from market leaders such as Bose and Sennheiser will be crucial.

Apple's headphone ambitions put it in a collision course with already-popular brands like Sony, Samsung, and Sony - and Apple's own Beats by Dre. However, given the strength of the Beats headphone name, the company will likely keep that brand while developing a different new one for the new headphones.

Apple previously discarded the Beats Music streaming name when it launched Apple Music in 2015. The said headphones are speculated to be targeted at the high-end of the market with features such as wireless pairing.

Apple selling high-end headphones, however, could be another story. The HomePod is priced more than $100 higher than its main voice-activated competition from Sonos, and $200 more than an Amazon Echo, but $50 less than a competing Google Home Max. That means a pair of the new headphones may run you anywhere from $350 to $500 based on the pricing of existing products in the market.

The report says that Apple has struggled with the design of the headphones.

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