The upcoming iPhone 7 is almost certainly ditching the headphone jack at this point. What at first seemed like a ridiculous stretch is now shaping up to be the most credible rumor about the next-gen iPhone so far.
The latest whispers indicate that, while the headphone jack is out, wireless charging and a waterproof design are finally in.
Fast Company reported today that an anonymous source confirmed all these rumors. Apple wants to make the iPhone 7 even thinner than the iPhone 6 and 6s, and the only way to do that is to ax the 3.5-mm headphone jack.
That means two things will very likely happen when the iPhone 7 launches.
The first is that every iPhone 7 will ship either with a pair of Lightning-connected EarPods or wireless, Bluetooth-enabled EarPods to replace the current ones that ship with the iPhone.
Second, customers who want to use third-party wired headphones will have to purchase new ones that connect via Lightning port. Some manufacturers have already begun shipping Lightning headphones, albeit for a pretty steep price. Apple could also theoretically release some crappy 3.5-mm headphone-jack-to-Lightning adapter, too.
The future is still very bright, though. The source tells Fast Company that the new audio system in the iPhone 7 will have built-in noise-canceling functionality. The next-gen handsets will work with the new earphones to block out background sounds when you’re listening to music or on the phone.
Plus, the iPhone 7 should finally be waterproof and charge wirelessly. Waterproofing will presumably come via a simple hydrophobic coating inside and outside of the device, but it’s not yet clear how Apple plans to execute the wireless charging feature. Many Samsung smartphones charge on a wireless charging pad, so unless Apple has an unforeseen trick or two up its sleeve, Cupertino should just follow suit.
Don’t worry about buying your new pair of headphones just yet, though. Several months still separate us from the iPhone 7. Plus, people who generally stick with Apple’s own headphones shouldn’t need to buy anything new.
As always, the device is due out in the summer or fall.