Lightning vs 3.5mm headphone jack: Apple’s decision to kill the 3.5mm headphone jack when announcing the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus is still causing a bit of a stir, even though we almost knew that it was going to happen since late last year. People seem to like to be upset about anything and everything these days, and Apple’s decision to ditch the little 3.5mm plug is the latest to have everyone frothing at the mouth.
The thing is, Apple’s decision isn’t all that crazy for a few different reasons. Admittedly, it won’t be to everyone’s taste – you can’t please everyone in this world – but when you do think about it, maybe it is time we moved on after all. Let’s have a look at why Lightning might be a better option for headphones than the legacy 3.5mm headphone port.
When using a Lightning connection, headphones manufacturers can use their own higher quality digital signal processor, digital-to-analog converter (DAC), and amplifier in order to create a deeper, more full sound. Traditional headphones have to rely on what the iPhone can do with its own analogue circuitry. Lightning headphones? Not so much.
Thinner Devices In Future
Removing the circuitry required to make analog headphones work from within the device, as well as the actual jack itself, means that smartphones can be thinner and smaller than before, which just stands to reason. If the prospect of thinner devices doesn’t get you excited, how about simply giving manufacturers more room for additional stuff? Like battery!
Innovative And High Tech Headphones From Third-Parties
The use of Lightning cables to connect headphones to smartphones allows manufacturers of those headphones to do interesting and innovative things with the electronics within the headphones themselves. Noise cancellation within headphones might no longer need batteries, for example, thanks to the power provided by that Lightning port.
Apple MFi-approved Brightech Pure Lightning Earphones with noise cancellation
Also as mentioned earlier, higher quality digital-to-analog converters built into headphones could potentially mean improved audio quality as headphones won’t have to rely on Apple’s own ordinary circuitry and innards to make things work.
End Of Knockoff EarPods
Fake EarPods with 3.5mm jacks are everywhere, and while it doesn’t guarantee anything, Apple’s MFi program and the use of Lightning connectors should at least reduce the number of knock-off earphones doing the rounds. Hopefully!
“Courage” (It’s time to move on)
Steve Jobs said it himself six years ago, and while one might not necessarily agree with the use of the word, it’s clear that Apple is determined to lead the way. Killing the 100-year-old 3.5mm headphone jack tech with the iPhone 7 is a bold move, and while Motorola has already tried it with one of its own smartphones this year, when Apple does something, the world takes notice.
Could this be the start of the 3.5mm headphone jack’s demise? It sure looks like. Expect every major smartphone manufacturer to start dropping 3.5mm jacks from their devices in one year from now.
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