Apple Makes AirPods Less Appealing as Beats Goes Budget-Friendly

A pair of red Beats Solo Buds (2024) in their charging case, sitting on a desk and a notebook
Credit: Beats by Dre

A pair of red Beats Solo Buds (2024) in their charging case, sitting on a desk and a notebook
Credit: Beats by Dre

Back in the 2010s, owning a pair of Beats by Dre wasn't a minor thing—it was a status symbol, a brand that exuded premium quality and luxury, much like Gucci and Louis Vuitton. The iconic Beats Pill speaker appeared everywhere in promotions, from Miley Cyrus's music videos to its unfortunate feature in the movie Transformers: Age of Extinction.

As one of the best Bluetooth speakers on the market, Beats was unsurprisingly marketed as the premium audio product you needed. Even if Beats' offerings didn't measure up to competitors in performance, it didn't matter. Beats was more than just a product—it was a sign of wealth and style.

However, as time has passed and people now seek more value for their money, Beats has lost its status as the luxury brand it once was. Audiophiles demand the best of the best on the market, while many people prefer simplicity over hefty price tags. It's hardly surprising, given that most would now consider AirPods the best earbuds for iPhones, despite the fact Apple acquired Beats by Dre in 2014.

Interestingly, Apple seems to understand this shift in the market. Two new products, the Beats Solo Buds and the revamped Beats Pill, signal a change, with both being remarkably budget-friendly despite the brand's previous premium connotations.

The wireless earbuds, the Beats Solo Buds, are available for order at just $79.99. Considering that Apple sells its 3rd-generation AirPods for at least $169.99, it's surprising that Apple is positioning the once-luxury brand as a more affordable alternative. What's even more interesting is that some reviews suggest the Solo Buds could be contenders for the best Android earbuds list as well.

Reports also indicate that the rumored Beats Pill will cost only $149. When the Beats Pill+ launched in 2015, it cost $230. Given the changes in the economic landscape since then, the upcoming Beats Pill appears to be a great deal at a reasonable price.

This suggests that Apple is trying to help Beats regain some market share by launching products that are cheaper than its own Apple-centric offerings, such as AirPods. This strategy might attract customers looking for a more affordable option, especially if they need a decent pair of earbuds for their daily walk or commute.

In any case, it will be interesting to see if this pseudo-rebranding will work in favor of Beats and Apple. It could position Beats as a better option for regular users over the premium-priced Apple products, but in any scenario, Apple stands to benefit.

This Article's Topics

Explore new topics and discover content that's right for you!

Have an opinion on this article? We'd love to hear it!