Phone connector (audio) Stories September 22, 2015

Apple patents half-height 3.5mm headphone jack, ready for slimmer future iPhones

While Apple appears to view the Lightning port as the future headphone connector of choice, with some manufacturers already on board, there are plenty of us who’ll be reluctant to replace our existing, expensive headphones. Which poses something of a problem as iPhones and iPads continue to get slimmer, and existing ones barely accommodate the 3.5mm socket.

Apple, however, has a potential solution to this in  a patent granted today (via Patently Apple). It’s essentially a standard 3.5mm jack cut in half, to make it much smaller in cross-section. This could easily be used with existing 3.5mm jacks using an adapter. The clever part is that it’s actually chopped off a little above the halfway mark, so the revised connector would still fit snugly in standard 3.5mm jacks on other devices.

As always with Apple patents, there’s no telling whether it will ever make it into production, but this one strikes me as a neat solution to a problem that could arrive as early as the iPhone 7, KGI suggesting that it will be around 6mm thick.

iPhone 6 photo: ukmobilereview.com

Phone connector (audio) Stories March 24, 2015

Kickstarter campaign aims to introduce MagSafe-style audio connections (if it survives Apple’s lawyers …)

Apple has in the past not looked kindly on companies offering MagSafe adapters for their products, but with a magnetic connection for audio rather than power, and Apple starting to move from MagSafe to USB-C, perhaps a new Kickstarter campaign might make it.

Magzet is a two-part magnetic kit for 3.5mm audio connections. One half is designed to remain in the audio socket (and cleverly manages to avoid cutting sound to the speaker when there’s nothing connected to it), the other attaches to your headphone jack. Once in place, it breaks away cleanly like MagSafe if you walk away from the device while still wearing your headphones.

The prototype is clunky, and I wouldn’t personally want to leave the jack in permanently, but they are aiming to make it smaller, and it will definitely save some devices. You can reserve a Magzet kit by backing it from $20 plus shipping.

Phone connector (audio) Stories July 24, 2014

As iPhone 6 enters production, even more internal components leak

Both NowhereElse.fr and Apple.club.tw have published images of a myriad of alleged iPhone 6 components. This includes pictures of home buttons, ribbon cables and other elements of the device. Yet another photo of the iPhone 6 design is also included, this time shown off in the gold styling. The hole for the Apple logo is also visible, as discussed a few days ago.

The two home buttons, pictured above, differ slightly different in their construction, clearly meant for two different form factors of device — if any more evidence for both 4.7 inch and 5.5 inch phones was needed.

These disparate photos don’t reveal anything particularly outstanding about the upcoming phones, but it’s just the last bit of a very long timeline of leaks. With the phones entering production, these leaks will only continue.

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