- Reuters/Beck Diefenbach
As expected, the new iPhone doesn’t have a 3.5 mm headphone jack.
That means countless headphones, speakers, and other accessories will require a Lightning adapter to work with the iPhone 7.
You’d think that Apple would have a strong, multifaceted argument for getting rid of such a widely accepted and standardized port.
The company’s main explanation is actually one word: “courage.”
“Now, some people have asked why we would remove the analog headphone jack from the iPhone,” Apple executive Phil Schiller said during the iPhone 7’s debut on Wednesday. “The reason to move on really comes down to one word: courage. The courage to move on and do something new that betters all of us.”
Schiller mentioned that the Lightning adapter Apple includes with every iPhone 7 is a way the company is helping ease the transition from the 3.5 mm jack. (Every iPhone 7 comes with a free adapter, but Apple will charge $9 per replacement.)
He said another reason for ditching the jack is that technology like processors and Apple’s tactic engine are competing for space inside the iPhone.
“Maintaining an ancient, single-purpose, analog connector doesn’t make sense because that space is at a premium,” he said.
Lastly, Schiller said that ditching the headphone jack paves the way for Apple’s new wireless-earbud technology.
“It makes no sense to tether ourselves with cables to our mobile devices,” he told the audience. “But until someone takes on these challenges, that’s what we do.”
Schiller unveiled Apple’s AirPods, which are wireless earbuds that quickly pair with Apple devices using a proprietary wireless chip.