In a note to investors, Ming-Chi Kuo reveals the detailed plan and strategy about Apple’s future plans regarding the high-end headphone and the next generation AirPods and AirPods Pro. According to Kuo, it is most likely that the mass production of 3rd gen AirPods will start from the first half of 2021. Also, the note speculates that the production of second-generation AirPods Pro has scheduled in the last quarter of 2021 or the first quarter of 2022. Previously, it rumored that the next AirPods would launch in late 2020 but now it has extended to the next year. In this note, Kuo mentions high-end Apple headphones with scheduled mass production in mid-2020 and with no concrete idea about its launching date.
Apart from the plans of a production schedule, Kuo also highlights about the predicted designs of the upcoming AirPod line. He informs that there will be new internal design for the third generation AirPods along with slight modifications in external design and features. It has also predicted that the 2nd gen AirPods Pro will be based on the same engineering as the 3rd gen AirPods. The 2nd gen AirPods Pro will adopt the system-in-package design.
3rd Gen AirPods will Launch in 2021
Kuo also talks about the shift in demand from second-generation AirPods to the AirPods Pro. The current AirPods helped Apple to grow its shipments in 2019. Now with the increased demand for AirPods Pro, it’s quarter over quarter shipments predicted to increase by 70% In Q2 2020 compared to Q1 2020. In the same period shipments of the second generation, AirPods likely to fall by 40% and between 11 to 13 million units.
The major driving force behind the increase of AirPods Pro is its new functionality. Overall it has expected that Apple will ship almost 90 million AirPods in 2020 with a major share of second-generation AirPods about 50-55 million units and the remaining share of AirPods Pro. Also, on the market expectations of the new AirPods model in 2020, Kuo expects the new Beats model in the future.