Apple’s next iPhone will be so thin that the company has decided to ditch the standard 3.5mm headphone port for the first time since the iPhone’s 2007 inception, a reasonably accurate Japaese blog, Macotakara, reported Friday.
The move should help Apple’s engineers shave off another millimeter of thickness or so, reports the publication, adding that users will instead connect wireless headphones over Bluetooth or compatible wired headphones over the Lightning port.
Citing a reliable source, the publication went on to claim that the iPhone 7 will ship with a reworked version of Apple’s EarPods headphones that will feature Lightning in place of the standard 3.5mm jack and a built-in digital-to-analog converter.
While most of the existing Bluetooth headphones will just work on the iPhone 7, much like on any Bluetooth-enabled iOS device, vendors of wired headphones could think twice before investing money into development of Lightning-outfitted headphones.
Because Lightning is all digital and the standard 3.5mm audio port is analog only, headphone makers will have to add an analog-to-digital converter to their existing products, which might result in jacked-up prices.
Apple might release a 3.5mm-to-Lightning adapter to help users connect their existing headphones to the next iPhone, but this won’t provide the same benefits in terms of audio clarity as an all-digital solution, without any conversion, enabled by Lightning.