Apple Should just Confirm the iPhone 7 Headphone Jack is Gone

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The only big design change we can expect to see in the iPhone 7 when it ships this fall will be the lack of a headphone jack. That's what the latest report claims, and it also says it'll be 2017 before a major redesign comes. Considering this report comes from the Wall Street Journal, Apple should just go ahead and officially confirm the headphone jack is gone.

Don't count on a headphone jack for the next iPhone refreshSources speaking with the Wall Street Journal said Apple is really ditching the 3.5mm headphone jack in favor of digital audio out via the Lightning connector. They say this will let Apple make the new model a little thinner and more waterproof, but it will otherwise look almost exactly like the current iPhone 6s.

The WSJ's sources are in line with other reports claiming the new iPhone models will stick with the 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch screens introduced with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.

We've already seen rumors saying the familiar headphone jack is getting the ax, so that isn't really big news. What makes this different is that it's the WSJ making the statement. The publication has been long been seen as a favorite for controlled leaks from Apple, and a reliable source for future designs and plans.

With the WSJ's sources on board with the end of the headphone jack reports, it seems all but assured the next iPhone won't sport the audio out port—just like the new Moto Z Android-based smartphone.

That doesn't, however, mean the headphones you love will be useless this fall. Apple will have a Lightning to 3.5mm jack adapter available, although it isn't clear yet if it will be included with new iPhone purchases or an add-on accessory. Bluetooth headphones will continue to work, so that's an option for iPhone buyers who aren't into extra dongles.

Apple hasn't said yet when the next iPhone will ship. Since the new models will most likely ship with iOS 10 pre-installed, it's a safe bet we'll see them this fall when the software upgrade rolls out.

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You say Apple should make the statement official, but you do not give an argument as to why that is in their best interest. So, why?

Paul Goodwin

This is still a silly thing for Apple to be doing. A lot of Apple’s customers have expensive headphones which will no longer interface to their phone? I for one think it’s a horrible idea. The only option is to buy an expensive adapter. And for what, to make the phone a silly fraction of a millimeter thinner? It’s not time for this change.

Lee Dronick

I agree with Paul, keep the headphone jack. Add digital audio out if they want, but keep the classic jack. Keeping the 3.5 mm jack woulf have added benefit of stopping Apple from making the phone too thin.

Paul Goodwin

Yes Lee.

Also, all adapters for standard headphones will not be created equal. There’s a big difference in sound quality amongst audio D/A converters and the analog audio amplifiers that will be put in the adapters. The adapters that will sound as good as today’s analog output from the phones will not be cheap. The cheap ones will sound like crap.


With the current headphone jack you can talk on the phone, listen to music or audio from a video at the same time the lightning jack is used for charging. With the proposed lightning jack for audio design wonder if the adapter will provide a 3.5mm audio jack and a lightning port so you can listen and charge at the same time? If the adapter is lightning to 3.5mm audio jack only you won’t be able to charge and use your headphones at the same time. Would need to move to blue tooth headphones for listening while charging.


This has absolutely nothing to do with the thinness of the phone and everything to do with licensing the Lightning connector technology to headphone manufacturers for a fee.


@Paul Goodwin: “A lot of Apple’s customers have expensive headphones which will no longer interface to their phone”

This scenario has played out many times and Apple hasn’t had a problem before… SCSI, ADB, FireWire, iPod Dock Connector, etc… Most of those deprecated ports had hardware much, much more expensive than any set of headphones would cost. Guess what happened? People bought adapters to ensure their continued use. Why? A $20 adapter was much, much cheaper than replacing all the other equipment. If you spent $100, $200, or even $300 for a nice set of headphones, paying an extra $20 to make sure you can still use them is going to be a no brainer.

Here’s what I think Apple will release… The new iPhones will come with wireless EarPods. It will look a lot like the current EarPods except it will end at a slightly larger “control” dongle. The dongle will have the same controls for pause/play, volume up and down, but it will house the BLE radio and battery, and will have a Lightning connector on the end for recharging the battery.


I agree. It is time for Apple to take a stand and go wireless for headphones. So long as they don’t kill legacy products (i.e. offer the adapter), it is time for iPhone to go wireless for audio. Just makes sense. Standard headphone jack is a weak component that wears out over time. Nothing worse than getting that static after a hundred times of plugging in (and pulling out) a headphone plug, knowing it’s time to replace the headphone jack connector. Or, one bad bend with the headphone plug plugged in and you’ve messed it up permanently. Love my wireless earbuds. It’s time!!


If this is about making iPhones or other devices thinner, it’s a fool’s errand. Thinner means smaller battery and lessened charge length, even if the device is slightly (and imperceptibly) lighter.

If it’s about improved technology (and inevitable), okay, but don’t reduce functionality, like charging and listening simultaneously, using a microphone, etc.


I hear you ibuck, but you don’t have to remove any functionality. You can do all of those things wirelessly.

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