Apple will launch a Lite version of its Airpods Pro wireless earphones without noise canceling feature in the first half of 2021, TheElec has learned.
A South Korean material supplier is currently developing a system-in-package (SiP) with Airpods’ H1 chip.
The SiP used for H1 chip in the regular Airpods Pro was round shaped like a mouse. The SiP for the H1 chip in the Lite version will be a simple square shape. The supplier will go through Apple’s quality review within the year and begin mass production next year.
A person familiar with the matter said the Lite version will be priced 20% cheaper than the normal Airpods Pro which has noise canceling tech.
Apple initially planned to launch a Lite version right after the Airpods Pro were launched in October of last year. But the company canceled this as Airpods Pro were selling better than expected.
Cupertino is likely reviving the Lite version after a year to increase sales of the Airpods series in general as well as sales of accessories. Those who like the shape and fit of Airpods Pro but don’t use noise canceling will be potential customers.
According to CounterPoint, sales of wireless earphones increased by 24% in the third quarter this year compared to a year ago.
Apple’s Airpods series was the best selling earphones in the third quarter with 29% market share. Apple saw increase in terms of shipment but saw its market share fall from new budget model earphones. Xiaomi had a market share of 13% in the quarter, followed by Samsung’s 5%.