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Although Samsung’s latest Galaxy S7 flagship smartphone series proudly boasts the 3.5mm headphone jack, the South Korean conglomerate may also remove the industry-standard jack from its next-gen Galaxy S8, reports Digital Music News. Internally code-named “Dream” (Galaxy S8) and “Dream2” (Galaxy S8 Edge), these devices may replace the 3.5mm jack with a proprietary port.

The company is said to be “actively” and “aggressively” exploring the possibility of releasing a proprietary headphone jack to see how viable it would be.

According to details shared confidentially with Digital Music News from a pair of sources operating out of South Korea, both of whom are involved in the broader supply chain of Samsung’s smartphones:

Samsung’s proprietary jack would be designed with all Android manufacturers in mind, with easy and cost-free (or extremely low-cost) licensing to encourage adoption. Strategically, Samsung’s move is being considered a potential “death strike” against Apple, with the entire ecosystem of headphone manufacturers suddenly faced with a choice.

Using the numbers game, Samsung and its army of Android allies hope that headphone manufacturers will prioritize their proprietary jack first, leaving Apple deprived of newer, more interesting models.

More importantly, Samsung is aiming to severely marginalize Beats by Dre headphones, acquired recently by Apple in a deal valued at more than $3.1 billion.  Other headphone manufacturers are suddenly standing in line behind Beats, but could rally behind the competing Samsung jack to effectively marginalize Beats.

If the rumor turns out to be true, people who use iPhones and Galaxies may soon need to carry two adapters because Samsung’s proprietary solution most certainly shall not be compatible with Apple’s Lightning technology.

On the other hand, one of the claimants says Samsung engineers are pushing to boost the overall sound quality of any updated jack, “but few really believe that a fidelity boost will be realized or noticeable”.

As you know, Apple has solved wireless audio quality, reliability and power consumption issues with an in-house designed W1 chip, its first bespoke wireless chip that improves Bluetooth reception and streaming quality in power-friendly ways.

AirPods W1 chip

Samsung should unveil its forthcoming devices at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in February 2017 or at a separate press event in March 2017.

Apple’s justification for the removal of the headphone jack involves both philosophical (the future is wireless) and pragmatical reasons boiling down to saving space inside the device for improved components like a tweaked Taptic Engine, a bigger battery, a new Force Touch sensor and more.

I’m very eager to hear Samsung’s excuse for replicating Apple’s move.

Mockup top of post via PhoneArena.

Source: Digital Music News