Vlad Savov, a self-professed audiophile and one of The Verge’s founding editorial staff members, was skeptical of AirPods. That is, until he got around to trying them.
In a recent review published over a year after AirPods launched, Savov praised the first-generation Apple wireless headphones — The Verge called it a “belated discovery.” Savov writes that, at first, he couldn’t take AirPods very seriously. But after testing them, the headphone reviewer concluded that AirPods are the “best” truly wireless earbuds he’s ever heard.
Savov went on to laud the ease-of-use and seamless pairing between his pair of AirPods and his iPhone X. In addition, the reviewer wrote that the design — which he “initially ridiculed” — is actually the “best and most functional one” currently on the market for wireless earbuds.
And it wasn’t just the earbuds themselves that he had high praise for. The Verge writer called the design of the AirPods case a “total masterpiece,” before adding that its “form and function are served to the utmost degree.”
It wasn’t all perfect, however. Savov points out that AirPods don’t isolate sound very well, the four-hour battery life is less than amazing, and its relatively high price might dissuade many casual users from purchasing them.
But he concludes that, among small truly wireless earbuds, he “can’t see a better combination of price, features, and performance than what’s offered by the AirPods.”
It’s not just Savov, either. AirPods have been one of Apple’s top-performing products since it launched — despite the market meeting it with a certain degree of skepticism before it officially rolled out.
AirPods sales have also made up 85 percent of the total amount of money spent on wireless headphones in the U.S. since they launched, according to research by analytics firm NPD Group. They also may be part of the reason that Apple’s “Other Products” category has grown 36 percent year-over-year.
Apple is largely expected to debut a second generation of AirPods this year, which could include upgraded wireless capability and internal components. The Cupertino tech giant will also launch an AirPods charging case with wireless charging capabilities that will be compatible with its AirPower mat.
There’s also evidence that Apple could expand its audio accessory lineup. In addition to HomePod, the company is rumored to be developing a pair of premium over-ear headphones.