Apple Expected to Sell More Than 100 Million True Wireless Hearables in 2020

Apple is predicted to sell more than 100 million true wireless hearables in 2020 as it continues to dominate the global market, according to new data from Counterpoint Research.

counterpoint hearables market q4 2019
In a report published today, Counterpoint said the global market size for true wireless hearables had beat expectations, growing 53 percent in the fourth quarter of 2019, compared to the same quarter the year previous.

In total, 51 million units were sold in the quarter, while 130 million were sold for the full year. The U.S. was the main driver for the quarter, growing 76 percent year on year and accounting for 35 percent of the global market. Seasonal promotions and Apple's launch of AirPods Pro at the end of October.

The launch of Apple's new AirPods Pro model in late October helped the company record steady 44% growth in 4Q19, with 6m units sold despite supply shortages. Apple's market share fell slightly to 41% QoQ as it attempted to keep up with swift overall market growth; market share for the full year reached 47%.

true wireless hearables market counterpoint q4 2019
Looking at the year ahead for the true wireless hearables market, Counterpoint senior analyst Liz Lee said:

"We expect Apple to sell more than 100m true wireless hearables in 2020, including AirPods Pros, to maintain their comfortable lead in the market. The real competition will be for second place, especially in the premium market; Samsung, which sold 8m Galaxy Buds last year, will need further upgrades to those expected in the Galaxy Buds Plus, including noise cancellation and other advanced features and designs, in order to beat its rivals."

The upbeat figures come despite concerns that AirPods and ‌AirPods Pro‌ manufacturing could be impacted by the coronavirus outbreak, leading to greater supply shortages.

In a January investor note, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said he expects Chinese company Goertek to begin assembly of ‌AirPods Pro‌ in the first half of the year. The addition of a second supplier alongside Luxshare Precision should help improve supply of the popular earphones, which continue to face multi-week shipping estimates on Apple.com.

Apple is rumored to be considering bundling AirPods with future iPhone models coming in 2020. Given the high price of AirPods, though, and their popularity as a standalone product, it seems unlikely that will happen.

Rumors suggest Apple plans to round out its audio wearable lineup with a set of high-end over-ear headphones, which, according to Kuo, are under development at Apple's Cupertino headquarters. Kuo did not provide any details about these headphones beyond claiming that they will support Bluetooth. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman previously reported that Apple-branded over-ear headphones were under development, but it is unclear if they were canceled, became the Beats Solo Pro, or otherwise.

Top Rated Comments

kimmen Avatar
30 months ago
"Hearable"???
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mac_geof Avatar
30 months ago
Might as well start talking of seeables and touchables!
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
I7guy Avatar
30 months ago

"Hearable"???
You heard it “hear” first. But that’s a lot of headsets.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
WWPD Avatar
30 months ago
Apple is way behind the curve here...where are the smellables??
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
69Mustang Avatar
30 months ago
Interesting to me, Beats has the 8th highest volume but the 2nd highest revenue. Beaten (intended) only by parent company product. Beats, love 'em or hate 'em, is still printing money. Bad buy, Apple... bad buy. :rolleyes:

Also, "hearables"? Absolutely terrible moniker. Wireless headphones.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Adam Warlock Avatar
30 months ago
Apple to get in the hearing aid business.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone 14 Purple Lineup Feature

Will the iPhone 14 Be a Disappointment?

Saturday May 21, 2022 9:00 am PDT by
With around four months to go before Apple is expected to unveil the iPhone 14 lineup, the overwhelming majority of rumors related to the new devices so far have focused on the iPhone 14 Pro, rather than the standard iPhone 14 – leading to questions about how different the iPhone 14 will actually be from its predecessor, the iPhone 13. The iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max are expected...
iPhone 13 Face ID

'High-End' iPhone 14 Front-Facing Camera to Cost Apple Three Times More

Monday May 23, 2022 7:05 am PDT by
The iPhone 14 will feature a more expensive "high-end" front-facing camera with autofocus, partly made in South Korea for the first time, ET News reports. Apple reportedly ousted a Chinese candidate to choose LG Innotek, a South Korean company, to supply the iPhone 14's front-facing camera alongside Japan's Sharp. The company is said to have originally planned to switch to LG for the iPhone...
iPhone 13 Always On Feature

iPhone 14 Pro Screen Refresh Rate Upgrade Could Allow for Always-On Display

Tuesday May 24, 2022 7:23 am PDT by
Last year's iPhone 13 Pro models were the first of Apple's smartphones to come with 120Hz ProMotion displays, and while the two iPhone 14 Pro models will continue to feature the technology, their screens could well boast expanded refresh rate variability this time round. To bring ProMotion displays to the ‌iPhone 13 Pro models‌, Apple adopted LTPO panel technology with variable refresh...
apple music

Apple Increases Apple Music Subscription Price for Students in Several Countries

Sunday May 22, 2022 1:57 am PDT by
Apple has silently increased the price of its Apple Music subscription for college students in several countries, with the company emailing students informing them their subscription would be slightly increasing in price moving forward. The price change is not widespread and, based on MacRumors' findings, will impact Apple Music student subscribers in but not limited to Australia, the...
EA Apple Maybe Feature

Apple Reportedly Talked With Electronic Arts About Potential Acquisition

Monday May 23, 2022 10:58 am PDT by
Apple is one of several companies that have held talks with Electronic Arts (EA) about a potential purchase, according to a new report from Puck. EA has spoken to several "potential suitors," including Apple, Amazon, and Disney as it looks for a merger arrangement. Apple and the other companies declined to comment, and the status of the talks is not known at this time, but Apple does have an ...
sony headphones 1

Sony's New WH-1000XM5 Headphones vs. Apple's AirPods Max

Friday May 20, 2022 12:18 pm PDT by
Sony this week came out with an updated version of its popular over-ear noise canceling headphones, so we picked up a pair to compare them to the AirPods Max to see which headphones are better and whether it's worth buying the $400 WH-1000XM5 from Sony over Apple's $549 AirPods Max. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. First of all, the AirPods Max win out when it comes ...