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What's going on with the AirPods Max?

The supply chain is so constrained that now you won't be able to pick up a pair until well into 2021.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

Earlier this week Apple unveiled a completely new product -- the over-the-ear AirPods Max priced at a robust $549. While the launch day was slated for December 15, within a day, estimated delivery times had extended out to weeks, and all hopes of getting a set for the holidays had evaporated.

So, what's going on?

Must read: Best of the best gadgets of 2020

This is all very typical Apple.

First off, within nanoseconds of the announcement, social media was flooded with "LOL, look at that price, no one is going to pay that for headphones!" comments. Well, with the AirPods Max essentially sold out for the year, it's difficult for that "no one will buy them" narrative to flourish.

But… yes, there's always a "but."

It's also very likely that Apple had limited supply of the AirPods Max lined up. I've heard figures of 100,000 or less, which for an Apple product is very low.

It's also possible that the 8 to 12-week shipping estimate is flexible and that Apple will get them out of the door quicker (although not in time for the holidays). Apple estimates are notoriously conservative, and we could see the delivery times slashed significantly.

There's also the effect of getting people into the Apple Store. If you're going there with even a vague intention of spending $549, the AirPods or even AirPods Pro start to look like a steal.

And they're available.

Any readers ordered AirPods Max? What's your estimated delivery?

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