As soon as Apple’s AirPods were announced, it seems people were already imagining how they were going to lose them. Well, in an update on the company’s iPhone Service Pricing page, Apple has detailed that it is going to be charging $69 for a single lost (or broken) AirPod or charging case. Those with battery issues outside of the AirPods’ one-year warranty can be serviced for $49, MacRumors discovered.
The wireless headphones which connect seamlessly to various iDevices via Apple’s new W1 chip retail for $159 and are available for pre-order now.
Now, $69 seems like a stupid amount of cash for a dinky little wireless earbud, but it’s actually pretty great that Apple is doing this and it sets a nice standard for the broader hearables market moving forward. There have been just a few entrants to the wireless earbud market and none of them, to my knowledge, are offering single earbud replacement. If one of them falls out of your ear, you’re pretty much screwed and left to return to your wired headset in shame or throw down a ton of money on a new pair.
With Apple’s option, after losing one ‘Pod you can continue using the other earbud since the AirPods both can connect to your device independently and you can order another one in the meantime.
Wireless earbuds are hella early in their life cycle and some of the basic underlying tech is just getting figured out now so this stuff is going to be expensive early, but setting important standards in replaceability is a great precedent for Apple to set even if it does still hurt the wallet a bit.