Why Eliminating the Headphone Jack is the Wrong Call

The rumor mill has already begun speculating what new features and form factors will be in the iPhone 7 when it is released next year. As an Apple fan, I follow them with some interest, but I don’t assume that these guesses are correct until I see some hard evidence.

There is one rumor, however, that I hope is incorrect.

It is the removal of the headphone jack.

It may not seem like a big deal, but it could potentially stifle productivity, especially for those who use their devices for audio applications.

I currently use an iPad Air 2 at church to play loops and audio (I know that the current rumor only applies to the iPhone, but, like Lightning, these changes eventually make their way to the other i – iterations). One of these days I will likely upgrade to a newer iPad, and will continue to use it in much the same way I do now. Let’s say the battery is low. I need to charge the device while using it during a church service. If I have to use the Lightning port as my audio port, will I also be able to charge simultaneously? I occasionally play my guitar through an amp modelling amp on my iPad, but I have to make sure it is adequately charged before I do because I can’t charge the iPad and use the required audio interface at the same time. If I also had to use the Lightning port for audio…

Another part of this rumor is that the iPhone will be more reliant on Bluetooth wireless audio in future iterations. I am a huge proponent of Bluetooth audio – I am rarely without my Tenqa Remxd headphones, and I love the freedom they provide. However, another big reason I like the Remxd headphones is, if they every go dead, I can plug in an ⅛” audio cable and use them as regular headphones. If there is no headphone jack, will I have to use an adapter? Will the millions and millions of other headphones and other audio connectors have to use a proprietary adapter for such a basic use? And will we now have to charge the included EarPods? How much will that add to the cost of future iPhones?

I have read that this change is to make the phone thinner. Enough already. I have the 6s, and it is THIN. It doesn’t need to be thinner. It needs a headphone jack.

Bottom line: the headphone jack is needed because it allows the iDevice to utilize the Lightning port’s utility and the audio port simultaneously. Also, you can’t always rely on Bluetooth audio, neither from a connectivity standpoint nor from a power standpoint.

Agree or disagree?