First the headphone jack, now EarPods: report suggests Apple might not include free EarPods with iPhone 12 and 12 Pro series devices to nudge consumers towards AirPods Pro and AirPods Studio
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According to a report by analyst Ming Chi-Kuo, 2020's iPhone 12 models might not come with EarPods included. Kuo indicates that this move is part of an effort to bolster sales for AirPods, AirPods Pro, and the upcoming AirPods Studio headphones.
This move comes at a time when Samsung is bundling its TWS Galaxy Buds with the Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus and Galaxy S20 Ultra. While Apple's pack-in EarPods don't exactly deliver stellar audio quality, they work great as a low profile backup pair for situations where more expensive earphones, like the Audeze iSine 20s, might not be appropriate.
While not confirmed, Apple might offer discounts on its AirPods lineup over the holiday season, making the transition to TWS somewhat more palatable for iPhone owners. The move brings to mind Apple's controversial decision to remove the headphone jack on the iPhone 7.
We're still months away from the iPhone 12 series launch and Apple may well decide not to get rid of pack-in EarPods. We will update you when we hear more.