iPhone 7 headphone jack: why did Apple drop it?

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Updated: iPhone 7 headphone jack: why did Apple drop it?

iPhone 7 headphone jack: why did Apple drop it?

Apple has now officially unveiled the iPhone 7, and despite all the petitions, complaints and furious customers, the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus have arrived without a headphone jack.

From bendgate to bugs, Apple is no stranger to criticism and controversy, but the iPhone 7 is proving to be one of the company’s most controversial handsets yet, all thanks to this one feature, or the absence of it.

But while the decision is undoubtedly a source of controversy, there must be a reason for it. Here’s why Apple decided to make this bold move.

10 best wireless headphones available todayWhy is it gone?

Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller said the firm had been motivated by “courage” to get rid of the headphone jack.

Schiller said on stage: “Some people have asked us why we would remove the analogue headphone jack. It’s been with us a really long time and it comes down to one word: courage. Our team has tremendous courage.”

Updated: iPhone 7 headphone jack: why did Apple drop it?

 

That’s just marketing speech – which has already become a joke on social media – but Schiller’s follow up offers more insight into why the iPhone 7 doesn’t have a headphone jack. He said, “our smartphones are packed with technologies, faster processors…and all of it fights for space.”

That extra space, although minimal, is being used to pack extra tech into the iPhone 7. That’s clear from the dimensions of the phone – the lack of a headphone jack hasn’t made the iPhone 7 thinner, it’s still 7.1mm like the iPhone 6S.

Instead, Apple is using the freed up space for extra technologies, likely focused on the A10 Fusion processor and battery cell.

Updated: iPhone 7 headphone jack: why did Apple drop it?

 

Why maintain a space-taking single purpose analogue connector, which has been used in tech since 1964? You don’t, according to Apple, with the company instead looking towards a wireless future.

In the box headphones

You’ll get a pair of Lightning EarPods in the box of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. These are much the same as the EarPods you’ve had in the box with previous iPhones, but they’re designed for use with the Lightning port rather than a traditional 3.5mm jack.

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That means if you’re reliant on headphones you won’t be able to listen to music on your phone and charge it at the same time.

Updated: iPhone 7 headphone jack: why did Apple drop it?

 

Each phone will also ship with a Lightning to 3.5mm adaptor, so you can continue using your wired headphones with the handset. The adaptor doesn’t look great, it gives you an extra cable to carry around, and it’s going to be annoying when listening to music on the go.

Plus, if you lose it, Apple will charge you $9 (£9, AU$12) for a replacement.

How to convert your existing headphones to Bluetooth to work with iPhone 7Apple AirPods

Apple is also releasing wireless headphones for you to buy alongside the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, called AirPods. The AirPods are much like Apple’s EarPods, but they’re wireless and connect via Bluetooth.

Updated: iPhone 7 headphone jack: why did Apple drop it?

 

Each has a touch sensitive back, so you can tap on the headphone to activate Siri and answer calls using the built-in microphone.

You’ll be keeping them in a small wireless charging case that Apple supplies, and once you flip the lid open your phone will recognize that the headphones are ready to use.

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Updated: iPhone 7 headphone jack: why did Apple drop it?

 

That sounds pretty seamless, but the AirPods aren’t cheap, costing $159 (£159, AU$229) and they also look rather easy to lose if not stored in the charging case. Not to mention the fact that they only offer around five hours of life on a single charge.

Still, no-one said the future would be hassle-free, and if Apple makes good use of the extra space in its phones the port removal could one day be worth it.

Read our hands on reviews of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus

Updated: iPhone 7 headphone jack: why did Apple drop it?

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8 thoughts on “iPhone 7 headphone jack: why did Apple drop it?

  1. If you have a Bluetooth speaker/headphone, you can play the music on it.

  2. iPhone is dying. Apple is no longer THAT innovative. They even remove the old feature = Headphone jack, and added some other old features in iOS 10 THAT WERE EXISTED IN ANDROID SINCE 2010. Other iOS products aren’t dead yet. iPad’s are still alive, at least. Probably they want you to buy their iPod touch 6 for the headphone jack.\nR.I.P iPhone 2007-2016

  3. So they are pretty much replacing it to make extra money is how I see it. They’ll start selling their own headphones and specially licensed headphones that are just for apple for some extra money, as now that make nothing off of most purchases of headphones. Just seems like something apple would do. Simply giving the user limited capabilities just like they do with having no SD card storage, a universal charger, nor a removable battery. This is just another thing added to the list. I like the product but andriod is simply better since it solves these issues that apple has.

  4. Goodbye Apple. No headphone jack on a device that started out as an audio player is quite frankly hilarious.

  5. He is right, I have 700$ in headphones and headphone amps amps and I am not changing it. I rather change the phone then my Grado’s. \n\nI sit at work with headphone amp and charger plugged in, when they make the phone that can last 24hr on a charge with music on I might go back.\n\nGoing out today and buying s7 edge, looks the same as Iphone but has 3.5mm and sd card (35$ for 125GB).

  6. You’re being sensitive. Use the headphone adapter and stop being a whiny bitch.

  7. Here are my top 10 reasons for not wanting to give up the headphone jack:\n\n10) I already have over $500 in relatively new equipment that relies on the headphone jack. I’m not interested in replacing it\n9) I used my headphone equipment on my iPhone, my iPad, my non-Apple laptop, and on planes. \n8) Having an adapter between the Apple world and the rest of the world is inconvenient.\n7) I don’t think that Apple will be willing to replace adapters every time they get lost — instead they’ll charge the standard $29.95 and make themselves a tidy profit every time one gets lost.\n6) The headphone jack is a standard, the Apple Lightning port is not. The only way to have a common standard jack for all your audio devices would be to not buy Apple products.\n5) The Lightning jack is very problematic — it easily get full of lint which makes the connection very unreliable. The headphone jack does not suffer this problem.\n4) The iPhone is thin enough — it doesn’t need to get thinner. I would rather they keep the current thickness and instead boost battery life.\n3) I keep my phone on a charger when I’m at work with the headphone plugged in as well — listening to music. Having to use a dongle (which no doubt will cost $29.95 is a step backwards in inconvenience).\n2) How long will it be before Apple decides to replace the Lightning port with USB-C. Then we will go through this rubbish all over again.\n1) The headphone jack is not broken — so don’t fix it!!!!!!!!!\n\nPersonally, this is enough of an issue to me to drive me away from Apple. I’ve been finding more and more that nothing Apple has provided of late has been worth upgrading to — and now it’s looking like the iPhone 7 will be a downgrade from my iPhone 6.

  8. No headphone jack = Hello Android. I have a 3DS and I don’t want to carry around multiple sets of earbuds for every device I have. Simple as that. \n\nMy car doesn’t support lightening jacks. None of my devices do.\n\nIf it doesn’t have a headphone jack, I’m not buying it.

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