Apple Bluetooth Headset Discontinued: What’s Next?

picture-27It probably wasn’t Apple’s best-selling or best-loved product of all time, but it was tiny and cute. And you could see the rather sub-par battery life dwindling away to nothing via a perfectly integrated indicator in the iPhone’s status bar. But I never had one, opting instead to use my Sony Playstation BT device.

I’m talking, of course, about Apple’s Bluetooth headset, which has been discontinued and as such is unavailable for purchase from the Apple Store online.

Apple might just be leaving the market to those who specialize in the field, which is becoming quite crowded, but they might have something else up their sleeve as well, considering the auspicious timing of the item’s removal from the catalog. iPhone 3.0 has only just been announced, and counts among its new features support for A2DP Stereo Bluetooth connectivity. Could Apple be working on a headset that makes use of this new protocol to deliver not only wireless talk, but wireless stereo headphone functionality as well?

I think they might be, if only because of the precedent they’ve set with their Remote app following the release of the iPhone 2.0 SDK. I expect them to lead the app charge once again, except that given the nature of the feature additions with iPhone 3.0, they’ll have to do one better. I suspect that means they’ll show off the full capabilities of peripheral-specific applications, and a stereo Bluetooth headset is the perfect candidate. They can build in an equalizer app for controlling stereo sound to the headphones, and show the other side of things as well, by allowing hardware buttons on the headset to perform customized functions when used with the phone app, or with iTunes.

Maybe it’s wishful thinking, but it does seem odd that Apple would completely abandon the iPhone Bluetooth headset market when they’ve just introduced expanded possibilities in that very area. June is stacking up to be quite the month either way, but an Apple Bluetooth stereo headset would definitely make my day (and take away some of the sting of becoming outdated when they announce a brand new iPhone).


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