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Apple's W1-equipped BeatsX earphones now available to purchase after months-long delay

After missing a scheduled fall 2016 release, Apple on Friday initiated sales of its new BeatsX wireless earphone model, with select models ready to pick up in store today ahead of initial shipments next week.




Those in the market for a new pair of BeatsX earphones can now buy a pair through Best Buy or Apple's website for $149.95, with deliveries of in-stock colors, currently white and black, arriving on Tuesday, Feb. 14, at the earliest and a day later for free shipments.

Customers can also elect to pick up the device at a brick-and-mortar Apple store. Spot checks show BeatsX availability at many high-traffic locations in the U.S., but stock becomes a bit more scarce internationally. In the UK, for example, black BeatsX models are only available at a few outlets nationwide.

As of this writing, the newly announced gray and blue color options are showing estimated ship-by dates between Feb. 22 and Feb. 27 for expedited orders, and Feb. 23 and Feb. 28 for gratis delivery.

Announced in September alongside AirPods, BeatsX was initially slated for launch last fall, but delays sidetracked release until today.

Part of the Beats lineup, BeatsX is one of four new Apple products to feature the company's W1 chip, an efficient communications stack designed to ease Bluetooth pairing with Apple hardware and serve as a robust link to all compatible audio devices.

The over-the-ear Beats Solo3 headphone was the first W1 device to hit market and was followed by the Powerbeats3 in November. Apple's AirPods, another W1-equipped headphone, was also expected to launch in October, but reported manufacturing troubles pushed launch back into mid-December.

Along with Apple's W1, BeatsX boasts a Flex Form tethered design with magnetic earbuds for necklace-style wear and tangle-free storage. The device also sports a RemoteTalk with physical system controls and a microphone for outgoing audio. Apple puts battery life at 8 hours, while a Fast Fuel feature provides users with 2 hours of music playback from a 5-minute charge.