The iPhone rumour mill is in full flow right now, with Apple set to announce a couple of new handsets in the next month. If I’m honest, the update doesn’t sound particularly exciting and (if it’s all true) it represents a iterative rather than significant update.
That said, one of the most interesting – and slightly perturbing – rumours is that Apple are going to remove the headphone jack. That little “hole” where you “stick in” your headphones cable.
Sorry for the overly technical language here.
Apparently, it’s going to be replaced with headphones that plug into the lightning port – which is used to power the device and connect it to external things like speakers. This would imply that you couldn’t charge the phone and use earphones at the same time, for example.
The tech gurus are pointing to Apple emphasising the benefits of bluetooth (wireless) headphones, and this is where I have a bit of a problem. While I use bluetooth a lot at home – connecting to a TV and two Beats Pills bluetooth speakers in this apartment alone – I’ve not used it on the move. And, while I recently bought a pair of kick-ass bluetooth noise-cancelling headphones, they’re really for use at home and on long flights.
To put it another way, I wouldn’t be seen dead wearing them outside. Here’s an image for you:
Yes, the charming and not at all creepy Lobot from ‘The Empire Strikes Back’. This is pretty much what I look like when wearing them, so…no. Purely from an aesthetic perspective. I couldn’t handle the mocking.
Also, I have finally found the most perfect pair of wired earphones for both running and general commuting and I’m not about to give them up for bluetooth, no matter what Tim Cooks has to say about it. I’ve used them for months now and they are perfect in every way.
So I’m not hugely keen on giving up wired earphones. I’ll need a lot of convincing. But as we’ve seen, where Apple goes, others tend to follow. Removing floppy disk drives. USB-C. And the rest of the developments that seemed so disruptive at first but we all got used to after a while.
If the next iPhone doesn’t have a audio jack, it had better be water-proof. The Samsung Note 7 shows what you can do with a high-end handset and from my perspective, Apple has a lot of catching up to do there.
So, no. I’m not enamoured at the prospect of looking like Lobot in public. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is my contribution to the iPhone 7 rumour mill.
Style over substance once again.