The Taiwanese fabless semiconductor company MediaTek has reportedly been contacted by Apple to make components for headphones. The details of the conversation are unknown at the moment, as to which parts could be manufactured by the chip maker. People with information about the transaction report that MediaTek has already been chosen and the deal has been finalised.
Apple has never worked with MediaTek in the past; the upcoming manufacturing of parts for headphones will be the first ever for the company. Industry experts report that the output of the deal will first ship sometime between February and March. It could be the upcoming refreshed AirPods (third generation) which will reportedly look like the AirPods Pro but without active noise-cancellation. However, some sources have reported that MediaTek components will be used for Beats branded headphones.
Demand for wireless earbuds continues to grow
Last year, Apple pulled the wired earphones EarPods from the box of all iPhone models and as a result, more people will be investing in wireless earbuds. The iPhone maker could easily fill the gap with its wireless audio gear – AirPods, AirPods Pro, and AirPods Max. The company could be planning to increase the number of units being made as the demand is likely to continue to grow.
It has been estimated that 200 million iPhones will ship this year. The fact that none of the 200 million units will have earphones in the box will result in people clamouring to buy something from the market. Not everyone will invest in Apple’s AirPods but the company could definitely try to draw most of the crowd to its stall. A lot of new entrants are in the market now, offering wireless earphones for a much lower price than AirPods but of course not with the same quality.
MediaTek makes chips for Android phones – mostly budget oriented smartphones and tablets. Qualcomm continues to rule the high-end and mid-range Android phones chip market globally.