http://www.digitaljournal.com/tech-and-science/technology/apple-reportedly-working-on-premium-headphones/article/516507

Apple reportedly working on premium headphones

Posted Mar 5, 2018 by James Walker
Apple is planning high-end, over-ear headphones to develop its presence in the audio and wearables markets. Coming after the company's AirPods earphones, the device will rival headsets from market leaders including Bose and Apple's own Beats brand.
Apple AirPods will replace conventional headphone jack headphones on the iPhone 7.
Apple AirPods will replace conventional headphone jack headphones on the iPhone 7.
© Apple, Inc.
The existence of the under-development device was confirmed by Bloomberg in a report today. According to the publication, Apple's been working on the design "on-and-off" for over a year. The company has apparently struggled to finalise the device's specification, with "multiple redesigns" created and then scrapped over the past 12 months.
The current plan is to create a set of over-ear headphones aimed directly at the premium end of the audio market. Apple will target audio enthusiasts who listen to music frequently and for prolonged periods of time. The emphasis will be on audio quality but the headphones will also integrate with other Apple products.
The concept sounds similar to Apple's aims for its HomePod smart speaker. Apple's approach with the HomePod has been to create an audio device that also boasts unique "smart" features. The company will now consolidate its presence in the audio industry with a pair of headphones that share the HomePod's objectives. If it succeeds, Apple will then sell a complete line-up of audio hardware ranging from in-ear headphones to static speakers.
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The headphones are expected to feature noise cancellation and Apple's new wireless pairing functionality. The headphones will connect to Apple devices in the same way as AirPods, further unifying the company's spectrum of audio products. Bloomberg didn't disclose any other planned capabilities but integration with Apple's Siri digital assistant seems another probable inclusion.
All of these details could still change before the device's launch. According to the report, Apple's continuing to face challenges in finalising the design. Apple insiders said the company has no fixed release timeframe. The company is prepared to scrap the project completely if the team can't achieve its objectives.
The news of Apple headphones comes after revenue from the company's "Other Products" earnings category surged by 36 percent year-over-year in the firm's first fiscal quarter. The increase was driven by 70 percent higher sales of audio products including AirPods, which appears to signal strong demand for first-party wireless audio hardware. "Other Products," including AirPods, Beats headphones, Apple Watch and the Apple TV, now account for $5 billion of Apple's revenue.