We’ve all heard the rumors by now. The iPhone 7 may be lacking a 3.5 mm audio jack. Do you like how my source link is a Google search? Seriously, one guy writes a story citing the omnipotent “people familiar with the matter” and a thousand other sites copy it, so there’s all of them.
I want to start by saying that we all should have seen this coming. If you look at the trends in Apple’s products, there’s a clear trend down the wireless route with the MacBook and the Apple Watch. Is it at all surprising that Apple might go the same route with the iPhone?
The MacBook only has a single port, which is really meant to be used for charging. Of course, you can buy a hub that turns it into more ports. The Apple Watch doesn’t have any ports. You can use it to listen to music, but you’ll need Bluetooth headphones.
The general rumor seems to be that the iPhone 7 will try to push users to use headphones powered by Apple’s proprietary lightning connector. I don’t really think that’s the case.
Let’s take a second to think about how these rumors get started. They start with a tip (depending on the source. It could have been completely fabricated), such as the tip that Apple isn’t going to have a 3.5 mm jack on the iPhone 7. The blogger then says, “OK, how will we then listen to music? They must be forcing users to switch to lightning. It makes total sense! It will keep people in the Apple ecosystem!”
No, that’s never really been Apple’s style. Apple never used the lightning port so you would have so many lightning cables that it’s too inconvenient for you to switch to Android or Windows Phone. They used lightning because it was better than micro USB.
In fact, that’s always why Apple uses a proprietary solution over a standard solution. If they can do it better than the standard then they do.
I’ve heard other speculation that Apple will include a 3.5 mm to lightning adapter in the box. That’s doubtful as well. Remember that when Apple switched from 30 pin to lightning, there was no adapter in the box. They sold adapters, as they probably will for this, but it won’t be included with the iPhone.
Still, an adapter for a charger is one thing. It sits on the end of my charger at home, but headphones are something you use while you’re out. Do I really want to carry around an adapter for my headphones?
Of course not. I will carry around Bluetooth headphones though.
Wireless accessories are quickly becoming the standard and Apple is just the company to push us into that era. This quick and painful solution has always been Apple’s way. Once everyone is done bitching, things will settle down and we’ll all talk about how much we love our Bluetooth headphones.