KEY POINTS

  • Apple is working on a next-gen AirPods model
  • The device will be arriving in the first half of 2021, a new report revealed
  • The new device is expected to feature enhancements improving overall performance

Those waiting to get Apple's next-generation AirPods 3 will have to wait a bit longer before they can get their hands on it if a new report from the supply chain proves accurate.

The upcoming next-generation AirPods model will not be arriving this year, according to a preview of a paywalled report from Taiwanese publication DigiTimes. Rather, the new audio accessory is scheduled to arrive sometime in 2021. 

Not a lot of details were provided aside from the AirPod 3's release window, which is between January and June next year.

The preview also mentioned that one of the companies responsible for Apple's next-gen AirPods is Inventec, a Taiwan-based Original Design Manufacturer (ODM) that makes a variety of electronic devices such as notebook computers and mobile devices.

Here's what the preview said:

“Inventec will still be among the assemblers of Apple's next-generation ‌AirPods‌ slated for release in the first half of 2021, but may account for 20% or less of the total orders demanded, according to industry sources.”

Another DigiTimes report also reiterated the same thing, albeit using different words:

“While the company will continue to be a production partner for the next-generation AirPods to be released in first-half 2021, its share of related orders will still account for 20% or even less, although it has expanded its capacity by setting up a new plant in China, said the sources.”

Based on these reports, it seems that those who prefer the AirPods variant without in-ear tips will have to wait a few more months before being given the chance to buy a new and improved version of the beloved Apple audio accessory.

Features

Not much is known about Apple's next-gen AirPods at the moment. One potential change that the Cupertino tech giant could make in the new audio device, per earlier reports, is the adoption of a more complex chip solution, replacing the older tech used on the second-gen model.

According to noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the third-gen AirPods might use a system-in-package (SiP) design similar to the one on the AirPods Pro. This means it will no longer use the surface mount technology (SMT) used by the current non-Pro variant.

This could result in improved overall performance, including improvements with Siri.