AirPods Max are just over two and a half years old and starting to show their age, especially in terms of new software features. A new concept from our friend Parker Ortolani imagines what revamped second-generation AirPods Max might look like, taking design cues from the just-announced Vision Pro.
In Parker’s concept, he’s replaced the existing AirPods Max band with something similar to the Head Band from the Vision Pro, including a dedicated dial for adjusting the fit. This would make for a more comfortable and breathable design. When I tried out the Vision Pro at WWDC, I was very impressed with how comfortable the Head Band felt.
Using the Vision Pro’s Head Band could also make the AirPods Max design foldable, unlike the first-generation model. This would address one of the most controversial aspects of the AirPods Max design. It could also pave the way for a revamped charging case.
The similarities to Vision Pro continue with a new MagSafe-style connector on the right ear cup, which Parker imagines could be used for charging and lossless audio playback. I’d still prefer USB-C, but I’d be a fan of just about anything that enabled lossless playback.
And finally: new colors. Parker’s concept shows off AirPods Max in midnight, silver, starlight, and space gray.
As I wrote earlier this month, AirPods Max are overdue for a refresh. The design was controversial when it was introduced in December 2020, and Apple hasn’t done anything to address those complaints.
The software-side of things is even worse. Apple announced a number of new features for AirPods at WWDC this year, none of which are coming to AirPods Max.
Despite my complaints, I’m still a huge fan of AirPods Max. I criticize out of love and out of hope that Apple is planning a revision that will come sooner rather than later. There have been rumors of a new version being in the works, but nothing concrete as of right now.
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