Apple Inc. ((AAPL) announced the release of AirPods Max on December 8, 2020, calling them “innovative wireless headphones that bring the magic of AirPods to an over-ear design with high-fidelity sound”. The main features of this product, according to the company, are “high fidelity audio, adaptive EQ” [i.e., equalizer], Active noise reduction and spatial audio [i.e., surround sound]. “..
Apple’s press release, released at 5:30 a.m. Pacific time and 8:30 a.m. Eastern time, ended a week of speculation. Previously, a leaked internal memo had indicated that Apple would be making an unspecified announcement at this point.
- Apple announced AirPods Max, advanced wireless headphones.
- Shipping is $ 549 and begins December 15, 2020.
- AirPods Max work with a variety of Apple devices.
- However, these devices must be running the latest operating systems.
Main features of AirPods max
According to the company’s press release, “AirPods Max combine a custom acoustic design, H1 chips, and advanced software to deliver computer audio for a game-changing listening experience with adaptive EQ, active noise cancellation, transparency mode, and spatial audio. AirPods Max are available in five beautiful colors, including space gray, silver, sky blue, green and pink, can be ordered starting today. Availability begins Tuesday, December 15th. “..
AirPods Max work with various other Apple devices such as iPhone, iPad, Mac, iPod touch, and Apple TV 4K. However, these devices must be running “iOS 14.3 or higher, iPadOS 14.3 or higher, macOS Big Sur 11.1 or higher, watchOS 7.2 or higher, or tvOS 14.3 or higher”..Because these are the latest operating systems released by Apple, devices running previous versions are not compatible with AirPods Max.
Apple advertises a battery life of 20 hours, but warns in a footnote that “battery life varies according to usage”. AirPods Max are priced at $ 549. Customers in the United States and more than 25 other countries and regions can now place orders. The first deliveries will follow on December 15, 2020...
Importance for investors
It’s strange that Apple is announcing AirPods Max so late in the holiday shopping season, just 17 days before Christmas. One possible explanation is that the company experienced production delays. Either way, Apple can bet that the relatively late release will catch the attention of buyers still thinking about gift ideas or potential recipients who were late in creating wish lists.
On the flip side, the $ 549 price point for last minute gift ideas can be a little steep. While a spate of orders can be a welcome development for Apple, if the company doesn’t fulfill those orders within the tight 10-day timeframe between December 15th and Christmas, it can have a negative impact.
Given that AirPods Max are designed to work with Apple devices running the latest operating systems, this can result in a quick upgrade of older devices if such devices can be upgraded. Alternatively, users who can upgrade but fail to do so for various reasons (such as the possibility that older applications may later stop working) may be lost as potential AirPods Max buyers.
In the meantime, it is possible that customers who are enthusiastic about AirPods Max but have older Apple devices that don’t support the latest operating systems may be encouraged to buy new ones. Such an increase in sales in other product categories would be a plus for Apple.
Reservation for gift givers
Since AirPods Max only work with other Apple devices running the latest operating systems, buying them as a gift is risky unless you know the intended recipient’s devices will. This uncertainty represents another potential brake on sales.