With Apple’s iPhone 7 announcement event now less than 24 hours away, we are finally nearing the point where we will no longer have to wonder what Apple is going to do about its decision to remove the 3.5mm earphone jack from its upcoming smartphone. At this point, we are pretty sure that the jack is going to go away, but what will Apple do with regards to making it possible for people to listen to their music?

The smart money is on Apple including a new, Lightning-equipped pair of EarPods in the box with each new iPhone 7 that is sold.

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But what about those that want something a little more high-end, something a little more wireless?

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo today shared his predictions on exactly what Apple has up its sleeve, and it makes a lot of sense. According to Kuo, Apple will announce the AirPods wireless earphones that have been rumored for quite a while now, but those hoping for their inclusion with new iPhones look set to be disappointed. In fact, according to Kuo, Apple will position the AirPods as a premium audio solution, possibly above the highest-end earphones it already sells – Beats.

We believe Apple will position Beats in the midrange market once it launches Apple’s own-brand Bluetooth headphones, in order to maximize profit with a dual-brand strategy. We also believe Apple will have its own-designed Bluetooth-like communication chip, given its higher requirements for power-saving, communication specs and potential rapid growth of Bluetooth headphone shipments. Cheng-Uei and Inventec are the likely choices for assembly service.

Whether this means that Apple will reduce the asking price for Beats headphones or simply that the AirPods will be more costly than Beats are today, remains to be seen. Either way, it is fair to say that a brand new pair of truly wireless earphones with an Apple logo on are likely to set buyers back a pretty penny, regardless of whether they’re actually any good to listen to or not!

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