Genuine-looking iPhone 7 Lightning-to-3.5-mm audio adapter caught on video

By , Jul 28, 2016

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As you know, the next iPhone is expected to ditch the 3.5mm analog audio jack for wireless headphones, powered by Bluetooth, and wired ones, driven by Lightning. Now, certain sources are adamant that the handset may ship with a Lightning-to-3.5-mm audio adapter in the box so that folks could continue using their existing audio accessories.

Today, we get another glimpse of the claimed adapter in a set of leaked images and an accompanying high-resolution video. This latest leak came on Thursday via Vietnamese blog, which claims to have received the adapter from a Foxconn factory.

First, let’s take a look at the video hands-on (hope your Vietnamese isn’t rusty).

As you would expect, the adapter is very short. Its industrial design, as you can see for yourself, indeed  resembles Apple’s existing adapters, such as the USB-C to USB and Thunderbolt to Ethernet.

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After plugging your wired headphones or other piece of audio equipment into the 3.5mm end of the adapter, and connecting the other end into the Lightning port of your iOS device, iPhone 7 owners should be able to enjoy analog audio from their iOS device without needing to buy a Lightning-enabled version of EarPods or put up with sound quality issues plaguing Bluetooth headphones.

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The site tore apart the accessory to reveal what seems to be electronics and an encryption chip, which is mandated by Apple for all ‘Made for iPhone’ certified Lightning accessories. The fact may be interpreted as yet another indication that the pictured product could be a genuine Apple accessory.

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When connected to an iPad running iOS 9 or older, a prompts appear saying that “This accessory is not supported by this device.” For those wondering, plugging the adapter into a device like the iPhone 6s or iPhone SE with a beta of iOS 10 installed works without any hiccups.

According to the site, you can even plug the headphones into both the standard 3.5mm audio jack on an existing iPhone and then connect the adapter to the Lightning port, in which case iOS will route audio through the Lightning port.

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The biggest downside to ditching the 3.5mm audio jack is the fact that owners of wired headphones won’t be able to listen to music whilst charging the device. On the plus side, the move to all-digital sound should enhance the sound quality.

The removal of the 3.5mm audio jack would also free up space inside the device for other components because the 3.55mm jack is quite long inside the device and an additional digital-to-analog (DAC) converter chip is required on the logic board.

RELATED: is 3.5mm audio plug the new floppy drive?

Moving to all-digital sound via Lightning and wireless Bluetooth audio basically moves the DAC chip from the iPhone into either the adapter or the headphone hardware itself. By bundling this adapter with the next iPhone, Apple would ensure that every customer would be able to instantly use their legacy headphones with the phone while helping reduce manufacturing costs for headphone makers.

Source: (Google Translate) via MacRumors

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  • In 10 years, I expect Apple to reintroduce all the ports and call it revolutionary.

    • And please, bring back the floppy drive!

      • The King

        The floppy drive doesn’t exist?

      • Abhijeet Gupta

        Still have a few of them lying in the drawer

  • Virus

    One easy payment of $39.99

    • bundled in the iPhone 7 box?

      • Virus

        Did Apple bundle any of the adapters in the new MacBooks for USBC? I though not.

      • Ds

        Did they bundle any of the 30pin to lightning adapters with iPhone, iPad, or iPod when they made the change? If memory serves me right, Apple did not.

      • BoilingWater264

        hell yeah, september will be great :’)

    • at least..

    • The King

      39.99? That sounds way too cheap. I was thinking 49.99 for this innovation of removing a headphone jack to make the iPhone thinner and give it “the same great battery life like last year.”

  • khmi

    Something that can easily get misplaced and Apple profits.

    • iBanks

      Have yet to misplace my adapter provided by lifeproof for my headphones or my camera kit for iPad or any other adapter for that matter. Just keep up with your things and you’ll be fine.

      • khmi

        Lucky you. The main reason I hate battery cases are those earphone extensions. Lose them everywhere. Buy new ones, and I will find one still stuck to my aux on my wife’s car. I’ve gone through about 4 extensions luckily they are fairly cheap at Fry’s.

      • J3ff

        I just leave the attachment attached to my headphones and no one loses. lol not that big of a deal. How many headphones do people have o.O? 2 max? and ones BT lol

      • iBanks


      • khmi

        Speaking for myself, I have 2 cars with aux cables, Beats Studio, and Apple ear buds. As for Bluetooth, there’re fine for audio, but try to watch a movie or video. There’s way too much lag, a quarter to half second lag.

      • Jayy

        Yeah if people look at the adapter as an extension to your headphones and not your phone they will come to like it lol

  • Apple’s cables are extremely bad.. this thing wont last very long that’s for sure.

    The photos look fake as hell though that lightning connector is crooked as fuq

    • techfreak23

      That’s because it’s been taken apart… I thought the same thing when I saw the first picture, but then saw the one with the internals exposed.

      • Right, or the internal exposed ones just show it’s put together? I dearly hope this isn’t real.

    • notewar

      I am already annoyed when trying to enjoy the music and the earphone cable not working due to it being crooked, now I got to be extra cautious for another cable? Seriously?

  • wwian

    So what the hell… you either get to use your earbuds/ headphones … OR you can charge your device? Not really an option. So what if the new iphone has stereo speakers? I mean, they are still not gonna sound great… I hope all this is conjecture and not true about the headphone port removal. I don’t think apple will introduce wireless charging anytime soon. So… yeah.

    • askep3

      They better not say they removed it for stereo audio because I never use those speakers anyways. 🙁 I also hope the rumors aren’t true

  • Y2J

    That adapter looks fake because the lightning connector isn’t centered. I really hope they don’t do this though because there have been so many times when I have charged my phone while using earbuds and if I have to make a choice now I’ll be pissed.

    • John Smith

      They probably disassembled it

      • Amid Abdul

        Still looks unusually big compared to for example the lightning charger

    • techfreak23

      It’s been disassembled. Thought the same thing when I saw the first picture.

  • John Smith

    This vietnamise site is the same that leaked iPhone4 6 years ago after Gizmodo

  • Konrad Paul Mertner

    Am I the only one wondering why so many “analysts” tell there won’t be a built in DAC anymore? Yes, future headphones and this adapter will have a digital-analog-converter, but what is going to power the internal speakers if not a built in DAC? An external adapter? O.o I don’t think so…

  • Dao Sasone

    A dole maa!

  • Nirvana

    that’s one more thing to lose

  • Gabriel Anaya

    Why would Apple include the 3.5 mm to lightning adapter when they could sell it to you separately?

  • adele hanks

    Note 7, Here I come

  • adele hanks

    Digital sound output ?
    What about the EarPods receiving the signals is that digital too?

  • khmi

    If you google “Bluetooth video lag” you’ll see that I’m not the only one. Latency is just a byproduct of using Bluetooth for video

    • J3ff

      best get used to it! wired headsets will be a thing of the past. maybe bluetooth 5.0 will help? idk. Ive never complained about “bluetooth video lag”

      • khmi

        Might have to :/