It’s been widely reported that the iPhone 7 is destined to ditch the dated headphone jack in favor of wireless audio solutions and a Lightning adapter for wired headphones and speakers, and now internal iOS software code seems to all but confirm the rumor. Jailbreaker @kyoufujibaya claims to have discovered a reference to ‘Headphones.have.%sinput.NO.’ within the latest iOS 9.3 beta 1.1 software release, which would appear to be related to the transition from 3.5 mm headphones to alternative solutions on iPhones. The same jailbreaker also has another interesting discovery based on the iPhone’s codebase …
Lightning January 19
Lightning January 11
If all the recent reports turn out to be true, it looks like Apple might actually ditch the 3.5mm headphone jack for the next-generation iPhone later this year. It’s been a long-time coming, not just since Apple started preparing for the transition with audio over Lightning for headphone makers a couple years back, but also since wireless Bluetooth headphones have become good enough in recent years to replace wired solutions that rely on the 3.5mm jack we’ve used for the last century or so.
Apple is no stranger to being first to ditch old technologies while ushering in the new (think floppy drive, optical drives, and everything on the new 12-inch MacBook, as a few examples), but how do you feel about this particular transition?
Lightning January 8
With its resources from the 2014 acquisition of headphone maker Beats Electronics, Apple is prototyping a completely new set of Bluetooth earphones with the potential of launching the accessory alongside the iPhone 7 this fall. The new earphones are said to be completely wireless, which is to say that they do not even have a cable connecting the left and right ear pieces. Sources say that the headphones are similar in concept to the Motorola Hint headset (pictured above) and Bragi’s new Dash headphones that were shown at CES this week.
Lightning January 7
We’re still a while away from the launch of the iPhone 7, but rumors have been running rampant recently concerning the design and features of Apple’s next flagship device. Fast Company has now published a new report in which it corroborates many earlier rumors regarding the iPhone 7, as well as offering up a few more details and tidbits.
Lightning December 22, 2015
Two weeks after quietly updating the Lightning to SD Card Camera Reader to USB 3.0 and adding iPhone support to the formerly iPad-only accessory, Apple is signaling that similar changes may be coming to its cousin, the Lightning to USB Camera Adapter. Notably, Apple has updated the USB Camera Adapter’s official page to add support for the iPhone 5, 5c, 5s, 6, 6 Plus, 6s, and 6s Plus, mirroring a change to the SD Card Camera Reader that was discovered alongside iOS 9.2. Though iPhone compatibility was added in iOS 9.2, Apple previously left the USB Camera Adapter’s page unchanged.
Lightning December 12, 2015
Three years ago, Apple released the original Lightning to SD Card Camera Reader, a larger, faster, and more expensive version of a Camera Connection Kit component it had previously developed for Dock Connector iPads. When I tested it back in 2012, I noted that the reader was working 3 times faster than its predecessor when used with the then-current iPad (4th-Gen), and 50% faster with the original iPad mini. Since then, iPads have only gotten faster, while the Reader has stayed unchanged.
This week, Apple subtly replaced the accessory with the Lightning to SD Card Camera Reader (USB 3), which carries the same $29 price and arrives in a nearly identical box. As the parentheses suggest, the new Lightning to SD Card Camera Reader is capable of running at USB 3 speeds if the connected iPad supports USB 3 — for now, only the iPad Pro does — but it’s backward-compatible with earlier USB 2 iPads, and thanks to iOS 9.2, both old and new Readers now work with iPhones. If you have an iPad Pro, or plan to get a new Apple device in the future, the new version should be a no-brainer purchase over its predecessor, though other options (such as Eye-Fi’s excellent wireless SD cards, reviewed here) can eliminate the need for card readers altogether, even if they operate at slower speeds…