It seems that Apple has been hard at working at making a better set of high-end over the ear headphones. I figured we would just get a souped-up pair of Beat Studio cans with the latest Apple H1 chip, but it looks like Apple is aiming a lot higher with the AirPods Studios that should be released soon. A series patents that were filed back in May but were published today, reveal some of what they have been up to on the design side.
The four new patents are labeled Headphones With Increased Back Volume, Headphones With Magnetic Sensor, Headphones With Removable Ear Pieces and Headphones with Telescoping Stem Assembly. While the magnetic sensors that will detect the orientation of the headphones and swap the left and right sides based on how they are worn and the removable ear pieces were predicted a few months ago, the telescoping stem design is a new development.
This new design will allow the new AirPods Studio to fold flat, making transportation easier.
Another interesting element of this design is the “spring band,” as it is referred to in the patent filing. I’m curious to see if this band will be able to form fit to the shape of the wearer’s head. The inherent flexibility in this design could allow for that. My Beats Solo Pros have a flexible plastic band that is quite comfortable, but this could be a real step forward for the classic metal frame design that was popular with older over the ear headphones. If Apple pulls it off, we cold see a wave of copycat retro headphone designs.
I’ve been ready to get my hands on Apple’s coming AirPods Studio since they were first rumored and these new filings certainly aren’t helping that. The good news is that Apple usually requests delays in patent publications until just before a product releases. The fact that these showed up today means that a release next Tuesday or Wednesday along with an iPad Air and Apple Watch (depending on which Apple leaker you believe more) is a real possibility.
The Air Pods Studio release could still be delayed until October’s iPhone announcement, but I’m betting on sooner rather than later after today. My money is ready Apple. Come on and take it.