AirPods ship times drop to 2-3 weeks from Apple amid immediate availability from resellers
AirPods ship times from Apple's online store have dropped below one month for the first time since the popular headphones debuted more than eight months ago, though third-party resellers have stock available for immediate purchase.
Apple recently updated AirPods product pages around the world to reflect the improved delivery times, with many countries showing shipping estimates of two to three weeks.
The apparent stock increase arrives as Apple works to achieve supply and demand equilibrium for its wireless headphone device.
During the company's quarterly conference call for the third fiscal quarter of 2017, CEO Tim Cook said AirPods production capacity had been increased in a bid to better meet continued strong demand. The decision seems to be paying off, though Apple has yet to generate surplus adequate to bring ship times down to the usual next-day availability.
Announced at Apple's iPhone event last year, AirPods were initially slated to go on sale in October of 2016, but a series of delays pushed launch to December. Initial interest was intense, with one report claiming AirPods captured 26 percent of the wireless headphone market after launch.
While Apple struggles to stock its own stores, resellers have ample supply on hand for immediate sale. For those unwilling to wait the two to three weeks quoted by Apple, B&H Photo, Verizon and Abt.com all have units in stock for $159.
AirPods are slated to garner new functionality when iOS 11 sees release later this fall, with separate left and right AirPod tap gestures enabling customized access to Siri, as well as play/pause and audio track control.