Is Apple planning to release new headphones this year as the AirPods Max fall behind?

It was inevitable that despite their hefty $549 price, Apple’s AirPods Max headphones would eventually start to miss out on the company’s latest software enhancements. Headphones have evolved into their own platform, comparable to iPhones and Macs, and therefore require more powerful technology to support new features.

At WWDC earlier this month, Apple announced several new features that will only be available on the second-generation AirPods Pro and not on the older AirPods Max. One of the most notable features is “Adaptive Audio,” a new sound mode that intelligently blends noise cancellation and transparency modes based on your surroundings. This mode allows you to be aware of important sounds while reducing distracting noises. Adaptive Audio builds upon the Adaptive Transparency mode found in the second-gen AirPods Pro.

Additionally, the new AirPods Pro will have features like “Personalized Volume” and “Conversation Awareness.” Personalized Volume learns your volume preferences and adjusts the loudness accordingly, while Conversation Awareness enhances voices in front of the user and reduces background noise. Unfortunately, these features will not be available on the first-gen AirPods Max.

Although the AirPods Max have gained popularity, especially with frequent retailer discounts, many users are using them outdoors or in noisy environments where Adaptive Audio and Conversation Awareness would be beneficial. It is disappointing that these features are not included in the AirPods Max, especially considering their premium price.

There have been rumors of a refreshed version of the AirPods Max, but nothing has been confirmed. It is hoped that Apple will release an updated version alongside the iPhone 15 lineup, with improvements in comfort, battery life, and the protective case. Apple has been deliberate with their AirPods hardware, and it remains to be seen how long they will wait before bringing the AirPods Max up to par with the latest software enhancements.

 

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