There’s no denying that smartphones have come a long way in the last decade. While it is still early days, there are now so many new features on our phones which were once unimaginable to imagine back then. And with these innovations came new accessories and other gadgets that can enhance our smartphone experience further.
The one accessory we use most of all is our headphones. It may seem trivial but listening to music or watching videos on your phone just wouldn’t be the same without them. So you’d think having this accessory as standard would make sense right? But if recent trends are anything to go by, manufacturers are moving away from including a headphone jack. Instead they’re putting all their eggs into wireless technology and earbuds instead. Is this good for us? Shouldn’t every phone have a headphone jack included anyway? We spoke to an expert about what’s going on here.
Is There Really A Problem With The Standard 3.5mm Audio Port?
For years people who listen to music through their phone used either a Bluetooth adapter (for those with older models) or the built-in headphone port (if their phone had one). These two methods both work fine – however they aren’t exactly convenient when compared to wired audio options like a standard 3.5mm headphone jack. In fact, not everyone has Bluetooth enabled on their devices or want to rely on Bluetooth connections because they can cause issues with battery life. If you do opt for using a pair of wireless earphones or speakers though, chances are they will charge wirelessly too! That means less clutter around your house. Wireless tech is becoming more common than ever before so it makes sense that some manufacturers might decide to remove the standard headphone jack from future devices. However, while the majority of mobile phones today don’t include a headphone jack anymore, the reason why varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. Some argue that removing the port frees up space for additional features such as larger batteries or even more cameras. Others claim it reduces costs.
According to Consumer Reports, there’s no evidence that suggests customers are complaining about losing the headphone jack – quite the opposite actually. This isn’t necessarily surprising considering that millions of consumers own headphones compatible with a standard 3.5mm port already. You also shouldn’t worry about the removal of the port being bad news for sound quality. Since smartphones nowadays typically use USB-C connectors to transfer data between different parts of the handset, sound is transmitted digitally via a separate connection called a DAC. Therefore, even if manufacturers ditch the headphone jack completely, audio quality should remain the same or improve thanks to advancements in digital audio. Although manufacturers continue to argue against removing the headphone jack from smartphones, they are making it easier for owners to access wireless alternatives. On the whole, removing the headphone jack won’t impact how you use your phone significantly – although there could be benefits depending on where you live.
In addition to smartphones, it appears as though we might soon see the headphone jack disappear from portable music players and tablets too.