After a two month delay, AirPods are now available to the public, with the headphones hitting the virtual Apple Store shelves last week, and brick and mortar retail stores beginning to stock the miniature devices as of Monday. – Since Apple announced that they needed “a little more time” before AirPods were ready for their customers”, much speculation has been revolving around why the Cupertino tech giant couldn’t uphold their original promised date of sale and the reasoning behind the unforeseen delay.
Many sources, including the Wall Street Journal, claimed that audio issues were the culprit holding back Apple from releasing AirPods to the public however, while I think there may have been a little delay caused by the wireless problems quoted, for the most part I think the majority of the delay was caused by the limited gestures AirPods could perform, with members of the press who were given early samples of AirPods complaining about the functionality the headphones offer.
When the AirPods were first announced, Apple stated that you could double tap an AirPod and it would bring up Siri. While this is a great feature, most of the feedback I heard was that people wanted an easy way to play/pause audio such as on the old inline remote. Now that fresh batches of AirPods have been released to the press, it appears Apple has now added the ability to be tapped once for play/pause and twice for Siri.
The way the AirPods recognized the double tap was by sensing force from the accelerometer however, reports are now claiming that AirPods are now using a capacitive touch surface making me believe Apple took these back to the drawing boards and added a little touch surface to add in the additional gesture. This would also affect the AirPods’ battery life which means Apple probably had to re-engineer the batteries.
Keeping all of this in mind, this all had to have been done in 2 months and Apple had to re- engineer not only the AirPods, but the manufacturing process, molds, materials, etc. This was a huge product change and could also attribute to why there is such short supply because Apple has to essentially recycle all of the existing AirPods and make all new ones. This was an incredible feet to accomplish and while most are giving Apple slack for delaying these 2 months, I think that it was incredible Apple only delayed AirPods 2 months.
What are your thoughts on the AirPod delay?