On Tuesday, Apple surprised customers with the release of their highly-anticipated premium over-ear headphones, officially called AirPods Max. According to a new report from a former Apple engineer, Apple had been planning to release them four years ago.
In a tweet spotted by MacRumors, former Apple designer Dinesh Dave sent a since-deleted tweet mentioning that the AirPods Max was the last product he signed a Non-Disclosure Agreement for before leaving Apple. The tweet was then screen-captured by former Apple engineer, Ryan Jones, and offered a bit more information about the tweet.
AirPods Max design started 4+ years ago! pic.twitter.com/W8rHTZIbVx
— Ryan Jones (@rjonesy) December 9, 2020
Jones mentioned that AirPods Max have been in development at Apple for more than four years. He tweeted: “Original AirPods were released December 2016. Pretty obvious Apple quickly saw the insane demand and said “what else could we do here?””
Apple has been met with numerous setbacks during the development of the AirPods Max. The premium headphones were originally reported to launch at the end of 2018, then sometime in 2019, and Apple finally released them before the end of 2020.
Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman reported earlier this year that Apple had been planning on launching both a higher-end “premium” version and a cheaper “fitness-focused” version. So, expect to see a cheaper version of the AirPods Max sometime next year.