Apple’s next-generation AirPods are expected mid to late 2018

Upgraded Apple AirPods are expected to launch mid to late 2018, according to Apple oracle and KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

The analyst who is frequently right with his Apple predictions reckons a fresh set of AirPods could crop up in the second half of 2018 to build on the healthy demand for Cupertino’s smart wireless earbuds.

“Media reports over the past few days on brisk AirPods demand and Apple struggling to keep up with holiday season demand align with our findings and positive predictions on AirPods in several previous reports. […],” wrote Kuo in a research note obtained by MacRumours.

“In 2018, we predict AirPods shipments will grow 100% YoY to 26-28mn units. We forecast the ASP of RFPCB for upgraded AirPods in 2H18 may increase, further benefiting business momentum of Unitech and Compeq.”

The mid to late 2018 timing would make sense as the next-generation AirPods would likely get showcased at Apple’s WWDC conference usually held in the summer or at the reveal of its next iPhone which has happened in September for the past few years.

Reviews of the current generation AirPods have been mixed – we gave them 3.5 stars – meaning there’s plenty of scope for Apple to improve upon its headphones.

The design of the earbuds could be refined and the sound quality could do with a boost given a pair of AirPods cost a hefty £160.

That being said the current AirPods have still sold very well, with major retailers running out of their stock of AirPods ahead of the Christmas season.

We’ll have a bit of a wait before we see if Kuo’s prediction bears fruit but we expect to see new AirPods at some point in 2018.

Related: Best wireless headphones

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