It seems that Apple may have done something that caused furor once again. Rumors across the internet, including tech blogs, news websites, and forums discussed the possibility that the iPhone 7 may have a new port for headphones instead the traditional 3.5 mm jack.
The standard headphone jack of 3.5 mm is one of the technology pieces that we are most familiar with since it’s been around since 1964. Its first modern use in tech devices was in 1979 when it was chosen to be the jack plug of the Walkman. Since then, people around the world is using the 3.5mm jack to connect headphones with their devices.
Almost every device has a matching socket to this port, so the 3.5 mm plug is considered universal for headphone and earphone use in every kind of devices.
The new port on the iPhone 7
Allegedly, Apple will introduce a Lightning port for the jack plug in the new iPhone, which would make the device in line with the rest of the hardware of the brand, but certainly, would put it on a separate path from the rest of the hardware.
Some people -and most tech editors- considered this decision something that may affect the user, since the change is not “user-friendly,” considering that most people already owns headphones and earphones adaptable to the traditional jack plug and now will have to buy new products to fully use the newest Apple phone.
Among other criticism, the Lightning port for the headphones also raised a major concern. Will the user be able to charge the phone at the same time that the headphones are plugged in? If the device only has one Lightning port, probably not.
But some other tech experts considered otherwise. For some, this decision resembles other design changes Apple has made in the past that in the beginning, were not very popular but ended being the newest trend or rule in the industry. Innovation has always been a significant feature of Apple’s product making process, and this decision is part of that essence, no matter what the consumer initially feels.
A major pro argument is that Lightning technology translated into better quality sound, and more simple hardware structure that can mean a larger battery, something that users always want.
The effect on the market
There is, of course, a strategy behind every decision a company takes. Not using the 3.5mm universal jack plug means that Apple will severely change the market options in the headphones and earphones industry. Brands will probably be forced to modify their hardware (or create some new) to supply devices for the Apple users.
It certainly means more control for Apple in the accessory market. However, there is still some significant competition in the terms of innovation for headphones, like wireless devices.
Wireless technology, mostly used with the latest versions of Bluetooth may be the counterpart to the new Lightning earphone jack plug. What is certain in the tech field is that change is the rule, whether it’s Apple or other company the one that puts it in the panorama.