Health monitoring features may be coming to Air Pods but Apple faces some stiff competition from two other tech giants keen on getting a large share of the market, Amazon and Google. While Air Pods have been used on both Apple and Android devices, the devices are designed for iPhone use, enabling Siri use.
Based on the various patents Apple has applied for pertaining to ear bud features and functionality including biometric sensors, new health-tracking AirPods could be used for detecting health data. The AirPods could possibly also integrate with the Apple Watch. Industry analysts expect that Apple may create AirPods with wireless charging support and a Bluetooth specification upgrade in early 2019.
Both Amazon and Google are working on their own consumer devices with Goertek and Unitech to create their own AirPod-like earpieces. Both tech giants offer Apple stiff competition in the space given the dominance of their individual brands and Amazon’s powerful voice assistant service. Amazon and Google versions of AirPods are expected to ship in the second half of 2019, with 10 to 20 million units. AirPods are expected to ship in large numbers in 2019, with 55 million units, then up to 80 million by 2020, and as high as 110 million AirPods shipped by 2021.