Apple’s long-awaited AirPods will ship in ‘next few weeks’

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After a disappointing delay, Tim Cook says AirPods will land soon.
Photo: Apple

The wait for Apple’s new wireless AirPods is nearly over.

Apple revealed the earbuds alongside the iPhone 7, promising an October delivery date, but anxious customers have not been able to buy a set. But Apple CEO Tim Cook supposedly says they’re being finalized right now.

In an email reply to a customer demanding a release date, Cook allegedly apologized for the delays and said AirPods might land in time for the crucial holiday shopping season.

The email, obtained by MacRumors, doesn’t give an exact date but it hints that AirPods might hit shelves by the end of 2016.

Customer’s comment: “Give us a release date. I really bought in to the wireless vision you painted….Let us know if it’s a month or 6 months, because then I’ll just buy some other wireless headphones.”

Tim Cook’s response: “Thanks for your note. Sorry for the delay—we are finalizing them and I anticipate we will begin to ship over the next few weeks.”

AirPod ship date delays

The headers of the email reportedly originate from Apple’s HQ, so it appears to be legit. Apple’s top executives have a history of replying to customer emails from time to time.

Cult of Mac asked Apple for info on the release date but we have not yet received a comment or confirmation.

The new AirPods are supposed to solve some of the woes Apple caused by Apple’s controversial decision to kill the headphone jack on the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. A free pair of Lightning EarPods are included with the latest-generation devices, but if you want to listen to music while charging your iPhone 7 or 7 Plus, you must either get a dongle or go wireless.

AirPods will cost $159 when they’re finally available. The cause of the delays has not been revealed. Early reviews of the wireless buds were mostly positive, though some testers remarked that there’s still lots of room for improvement.

  • Richard Ludwig

    Ehhhhhhh… I loved the AirPods, but I’m pretty fed up with Apple’s release timing and product availability.

    Unlike other companies, Apple chooses to be (mostly) secretive about products until they’re ready for release. That’s a good thing – it means I’m not waiting a long time for a promise of a product. It also means Apple has an enormous freedom to schedule releases.

    Lately, Apple has been really crappy about having a product available when they say it will be. Airpods delay, Apple Pencil availability, and iPhone 7 availability has left a poor taste in my mouth.

    Apple needs to get better at sticking to their release promises!