Apple spoke very briefly about AirPods at Tuesday’s big iPhone X event, and only really mentioned that the truly wireless earbuds would, like the new phones, be capable of wireless charging using a new case. Now, MacRumors is reporting via Macprime that the refreshed case with Qi wireless charging could come later this year at a price of $69.
As MacRumors points out, that’s the same price as a replacement for the current case if the owner is out of warranty. Otherwise, there’s a lot that’s still unknown about how Apple will make this switch. Will the company simply add the new case to its inventory and sell it alongside the original $159 AirPods at the same price or with a slight markup? Will Apple allow AirPod owners to upgrade to the new case, and will there be a charge associated with that?
Whatever the case, when Apple debuted AirPods a year ago, the narrative around the product was the same as the removal of the headphone jack: “the future is wireless.” AirPods’ relative absence from this week’s event makes it seem like Apple is completely content with the first draft of that future. So if, like me, you weren’t a fan of AirPods’ open design, the way they fit, or the earbuds’ long stalks, don’t be surprised if you have to wait another year for a revision.