13 October 2020
Apple is commonly rumored to announce its first-ever over-the-ear headphones AirPods Studio at the next launch event. It is known for keeping upcoming products under wraps until the official announcement but a recent Apple Store change has thrown some hints. As spotted by Bloomberg, Apple has silently stopped selling third-party audio products from its online store.
Apple has been selling headphones, earphones, and other audio accessories from Bose, Logitech, and Sonos for quite some time. These products were listed alongside Apple's own offerings but this sudden change of behavior is suggesting that Apple does not want any competition for AirPods Studio. It wants to promote and sell its own products whenever a potential buyer visits its online store. It is worth noting that these products were said to be listed on the website until as recently as mid-September.
The report further claims that Apple is in talks with offline store owners to get third-party audio products removed from the shelf. This is expected to take some time before every store gets clear of rival audio products. As of now, Apple is only selling AirPods and AirPods Pro truly wireless earphones along with HomePod smart speaker. The only other brand audio product that you can buy through Apple is Beats which is simply because Apple owns it.
If rumors turn out to be true, AirPods Studio will be the newest addition to Apple's audio lineup. It will be the first over-the-ear headphones powered by the custom U1 chipset. It will surely be a premium offering like all other Apple products.