Apple's AirPods are the best-selling wireless headphones despite supply bottlenecks

Apple's AirPods are the best-selling wireless headphones despite supply bottlenecks
Reputable Apple analyst Gene Munster quipped not long ago that the AirPods may turn out to be bigger than the Apple Watch in terms of sales and profits, and it turns out that his opinion might have been prophetic. Research firm NPD reported yesterday that so far in 2017 there have been more 900,000 truly wireless headphones sold in the US. Despite the rich competitive landscape from the likes of Sony, Braghi or Samsung, Apple's $159 AirPods have accounted for the whopping 85% of total US sales of wireless headphones here in the US.

Since they were released in December, the AirPods were plagued by various supply issues and design jabs, yet Apple may be laughing all the way to the bank when it comes to actual sales. Shipping times for Apple's truly wireless buds have been reduced to between two and three weeks, which is a big improvement from the month or so they were listed for in the beginning, so the announcement and preorder window of the new iPhone 7s, 7s Plus and the iPhone 8 on September 12 might see an uptick in orders that will cement the AirPods' position as the most popular wireless earbuds in the US in the first year since their existence.

source: NPD

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93 Comments

1. Bankz

Posts: 2548; Member since: Apr 08, 2016

Naturally. apple is bae!

82. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

Well of course, that's what happens when you force poison down your gullible fans' throats and then sell them the antidote.

93. sgodsell

Posts: 7383; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

Best selling Apple earrings. Apple needs to make some hoops to go with their earring, and they can make even more money, because it's been proven that Apple could make any $hit and people will buy them. Proof of this article.

2. cnour

Posts: 2305; Member since: Sep 11, 2014

Techie, did u remember your stupid comment few days ago about AirPods? Apple is the best in everything baby!!!!!

7. RoboticEngi

Posts: 1251; Member since: Dec 03, 2014

Yea amazing, not fitting and poor sounding crap, and still best selling. Isheep pushing Apple numbers....

19. bucky

Posts: 3785; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

Yes, it's a giant secret agenda. Or...maybe, just maybe they are actually pretty damn good.

48. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

Its not an agenda. If you like them, then like them. I don;t understand that you think, like all Appel fools; that because Apple outsells someone in something it mean stheir product is better. Let's just say for argument sake the AirPod's are actually great to some people, does that mean I can't choose something else? Does that mean I have to like them? See this is what is wrong with stupid fools like you. You don;t understand that we all dont have to like WTF you like. That is why their is choice. If you like them and YOU think they are good then great. If someone else likes them and think they are great...then great. I have no issue in what YOU soend your money on. But just because you think they are great, doesn't mean I have ot agree. Just because you buy, doesn't mean I will buy. You can like another product and not hate on another. Liking Apple products doesn't mean other products are inferior just because they dont sell in the same quanities and that is how you fools think. The AirPod's in my opinion cost to much for them to sound exactly like the wired versiosn that come with the phone. Apple already charges a ridiculous price for the inbox ones. And no one, not even Apple fans have ever said they sound good. And since the wireless ones basically have the exact same speaker, they don't sound any better. That's my opinion. You don't have to agree and it doesn't matter to me if anyone does or does not. There are millions who do agree and they have not bought or are not interested in Apple's option. Why does that bother you that we don't like everything Apple makes and aren't programmed to just buy something simply because it exists?

81. vantenkiest

Posts: 316; Member since: Apr 20, 2011

Your response is valid.... But your typing makes me wonder how many drinks you had before.

52. sissy246

Posts: 7120; Member since: Mar 04, 2015

Of course they have. They took away the headphone jack so you have to buy them if you want to be able to charge your phone and listen to music at the same time.

80. therealestmc

Posts: 679; Member since: Jul 23, 2012

You can get any Bluetooth headphone and it will work fine. No one is forcing anyone to buy Apple AirPods.

89. iushnt

Posts: 3105; Member since: Feb 06, 2013

But other companies are not as good as Apple when it comes to marketing poor performance products.

39. MarvzIsFallen

Posts: 646; Member since: Aug 11, 2017

i love apple products, for me, they are the only best tech company in the world. They have awesome products which is why, many are insecure.

50. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

The only insecure people are you all. Because you always have this need to claim your product is better, simply because you like it. If apple actually made the best option, there would be no other option. Its that simple. Its the main reason why OSX is only 5% of the worlds computers. I use many products, I talk about what features they offer and how they benefit me. I could care less who the brand is. One of the main things I have learned in life is, name branded products tend to be the worse options to buy. Which is why I always try. I didnt want to try the AirPod in the store, do to so many peopel who try them and I don't want others germs. I ordered a pair, took me a month to get. I listened via my iPad and iPhone and compared them to how the inbox ones sound and I didnt like them. I have never really ever used inbox headphones, because I know they suck. But the AKG's that come with the S8's sound way better than any inbox ones including the Beats that HTC use to include, which I felt were pretty decent. But I have Bose and my AKG's and I have a pair Beats. I don't need or like Apple's options. You are welcome to buy what you like. But youre the one who is insecure. I never have to justify buying what I feel is best to anyone. I talk about what is best period. Bose headphones that I paid $129 for are way better than Apple's options I dont care how many Apple sells.

61. cnour

Posts: 2305; Member since: Sep 11, 2014

Techie: When Apple sells a lot: I don't care about Apple sells. When Apple did sell a lot: Ohhh, Apple products are bulls**t and the proof is they don't sell well. Look Techie, all your comments can be resumed by: "I'm stupid and I hate Apple"

65. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

Your claim is false. Apple jobs is to sell as is any other business. The Mac has low sales, not because they are bad machines, its because for what they cost they are too limited for many. The price is not the issue with the Mac. My HP cost as much as the Mac, it simply came with more and I still use OSX on it through a VM. Apple makes good products. Once upon a time, Apple did have the best smartphone. When they did, I bought them. I had the iPhone 4 and 4S. I didnt need another iPhone after than because my needs changed and the iPhone simply doesn't fill my needs. I have stated many times, but you are too stupid to see; if the iPhone did everything I needed, I wouldn't own anything else. Apple forced me away from IOS by not doing what I need. Apple doesn't sell the most phones. Samsung does. I am happy both make sells, but I'm simply not like you. I dont care how many they sell. Because no matter how many they sell they will make more money than you and me and since neither you or me are gettign paid by either, why would sales matter so much? Sales matter to YOU all because that is the only thing you can brag about with Apple products. You can't make claims that Apple products are better because of any specific feature they have, because every feature the iPhone has other phones had or have them already. YOU have zero basis for any tech argument and thus sales is your only fallback. Sells do not always and never have dictated how good or bad a product is. So why do you only talk sales? The answer is a simple fact. Apple products are not the best, there are better options, just like Apple does make products that are better than some options. But being better than some, is not equal to better than all.

78. mrochester

Posts: 1000; Member since: Aug 17, 2014

iPhones have iOS, which is what makes them better than Android phones. You focus too much on individual features and not the overall package and ecosystem. In that regard, Apple is unbeatable.

76. BuffaloSouce unregistered

Hey look, it's one of the touch butt buddies.... Do you and Bankz follow each other around holding each other's pockets? He makes a stupid comment and they're you are right behind him to co sign...

41. thxultra

Posts: 457; Member since: Oct 16, 2014

Common in the audio world. Look at how many speakers Bose sells and they are awful. Then you have companies like B&W, Focal, Wilson, Tekton that people on here probably haven't even heard of that sell much better speakers. Have to give Apple credit they have great marketing.

45. Jimrod

Posts: 1605; Member since: Sep 22, 2014

I haven't even heard of Tekton and I make speakers for a living. :D

46. thxultra

Posts: 457; Member since: Oct 16, 2014

Their Pendragon speakers get rave reviews. They are mail order only and I don't think I have ever seen a ad for them.http://www.tektondesign.com/pendragon.html

49. Jimrod

Posts: 1605; Member since: Sep 22, 2014

They seem to like their tweeters! :)

51. thxultra

Posts: 457; Member since: Oct 16, 2014

What amazes me about them is they are supposed to have great midrange. I'm surprised with the driver config on them. 10inch woofers and tweeters don't usually blend to make great midrange. http://hometheaterhifi.com/reviews/speaker/floor-standing/tekton-design-pendragon-tower-speakers-review/

54. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

You think BOSE speakers/headphones sound bad? I have the BOSE Sports and I have another BOSE, not sure of the model that I was gifted. They are over-the-ears and I usually don't those types. But the 2 BOSE I have sound awesome, especially the over-the-ear ones. I use wireless headphones specifically for when I am running or cycling. So sound quality is important, but I must have bass. Apple's headphones have zero bass. The BOSE sports I have, don;t have enough bass. Its OK for when I am not running in the wind or riding, but when I ride, the wind prevents be from hearing the bass. My PowerBeats 3's are awesome for bass, but like all Beats headphones, the sound quality isn't great, but its wayyyyyyyy better than Apple's options for sure. My plan is to try more options from Harmon Kardon. I have an amp and sub from them and they work and sound pretty awesome. I listen to a lot of instrumental )Lindsey Stirling), Dance/Electronic and R+B and they all have some bass and I must here it because music without sounds like crap.

66. thxultra

Posts: 457; Member since: Oct 16, 2014

Yes BOSE are garbage especially their speakers. They are well marketed and yes better then Beats which are also garbage btw. Beats over drive the bass the sound isn't even close to flat. I do agree both are better then Apples options which is funny because Apple owns beats. Working out I go more for how well they stay on and handle sweat then sound. I use on ear headphones because I find earbuds fall out when I sweat. Some suggestions would be (not for working out) B&W P5 Series 2 B&W P7 B&W P9 (really big bucks but sound amazing) Grado SR series Open back so sound leaks so not the best for loud environments either but great budget headphones. Sennheiser makes some good ones too.

85. Diezparda

Posts: 941; Member since: Oct 23, 2013

Apple have great marketing and huge fanboys. It's like beats by dre, any audiophile won't say they are best quality headphone, but they sell really well. From my standpoint Beats create huge impact in headphone market, today many audio companies like Sennheiser, Audio Technica, Sony, etc... start thinking more about their product design & some marketing of course. Headphone isn't just a piece of tech, it is a lifestyle & people are willing to pay more for this.

86. legiloca

Posts: 1676; Member since: Nov 11, 2014

I'll actually use the money to buy a good sounding bluetooth speaker over these easy to lose icrap any day.

31. PhoneInQuestion

Posts: 496; Member since: Aug 20, 2017

Call out culture.

47. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

First off lets be clear. I dont care how many they sell. They are setill crappy poor sounding no feature having overpriced waste of money. Here is another thing. You have no idea how many wireless headphone sold in a year. So the source says 900,000 were sold, Apple sold 80%. Good for them. Sales numbers don;t effect my choice to purchase. Just because somethign is popular, doesn';t mean it is of the quality and standards I want. Get that through you peanut sized brains. Even though I have bought products based on being popular, like the iPhone in the past; I rarely do so because they tend to be disappointing. Apple's Airpod sounds like crap. Beats are somewhat better and I do have the PowerBeats 3 which I use on my bike rides. I have a TriAthlon coming in Wisconsin next week and I will be wearing my PB3's. I ordered AirPod's and tried them. They sound exactly like Apple's inbox headphones and they are terrible. They also don;t stay in my ears and I shouldn';t have to buy adapters 3rd party, when every earbud styled headphone I have ever bought, comes with adapters in the box. I have a pair BOSE Sports too which also sound way better than Apple's garbage and I only paid $129 for them. There are people who will buy Apple's garbage even if it sucks. I'm not one of them. I have an iPhone and that's bad enough.

88. iushnt

Posts: 3105; Member since: Feb 06, 2013

Yeah Apple are the best to sell anything. No other company could be able to sell those crap sounding AirPods.

3. Tattari

Posts: 27; Member since: Aug 14, 2013

This shows how retarded apple fanboys are , there are literally a metric ton of bluetooth headphones that are miles better for a cheaper price , but oh not it is made by apple must buy.

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