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Old 09-23-2016, 10:13 AM   #1
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Default Theory on headphone jack removal

Love it or hate it, Apple has removed the headphone jack. Some people think it's stupid and annoying, others think it's not a big deal. But today I was thinking about why Apple may be doing this, besides the reclaimed space from the jack for a bigger battery/stereo speakers.

I believe that Apple is trying to force a paradigm shift in essence. They are pushing the personal technology sector into new spaces. Humanity is stubborn and we get into certain routines/comfortable with certain things. It often takes a "push" to advance/try new methods. For example, physical keyboards on phones. That used to be the norm and everyone was using physical keyboards. But there were also palm pilots and other devices that had virtual keyboards yet phones continued to ship with physical keys. Obviously a big factor was the immaturity of touch screen technology, but eventually devices started pushing out touchscreens as the norm, and I specifically remember people resisting that change (I wasn't too fond of it at first).

So back to my theory on Apple. They are big time innovators and have a large influence on personal tech, several other tech industries, and society in general. So, perhaps one of the reasons they removed the headphone jack is because they want to push wireless headphones. They want that to become more commonplace and/or they feel that wired headphones are antiquated. Why need wires? They get tangled, they can obstruct movement, etc. So with Apple removing the headphone jack they are essentially pushing people to make the move to bluetooth headphones (because maybe they'll find the adapter situations annoying). That will compel companies to make cheaper and better quality wireless headphones and before you know it, wired headphones are a thing of the past.

Remember this is just a theory. I could be totally wrong about this. But I do think that companies have a desire to improve aspects of society or at least improve the ease with which people navigate through life even if the impetus is to make tons of money (which it probably is). Making positive impacts on the world at large and profiting aren't mutually exclusive concepts. Sorry for the long post lol. Just want to spark some discussion.
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Old 09-23-2016, 09:45 PM   #2
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Default Re: Theory on headphone jack removal

I don't really feel that Apple is in the business of advancing consumer tech for the greater good, rather, they just want to sell more of their product. They are in a position where they have such a strong cult following that they can force certain changes and a huge demographic will embrace it.

Correct me if I'm wrong about this, but I don't see much in the way of wireless headphones marketed to the average consumer, so now Apple can fill this market and sell more accessories. They already own Beats, so they can use that to fill that gap as well and their fan base will buy it all. A headphone jack is very small, it's really not a huge space saver in the phone to get rid of it, so I don't see that being a motivation either, it's all profit driven.

On a side note, I'm an iPhone user myself and although I don't see myself upgrading to the 7 anytime soon, it's true that I rarely use the headphone jack on my 6 anymore, so when I eventually do upgrade, it won't be a huge deal for me.
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Old 09-24-2016, 01:27 AM   #3
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Default Re: Theory on headphone jack removal

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Originally Posted by jarlmaster View Post
besides the reclaimed space from the jack for a bigger battery/stereo speakers.
In the place of the audio jack is a piece of plastic. Nothing internally changed right there.

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Originally Posted by jarlmaster View Post
They are big time innovators
I'm sure many would agree, but I do not. They've done some fascinating stuff, but not much has changed since the first iPhone. They use the word "innovation" at every press release (not literally), and often times nothing has changed. Specifically citing their release of the MacBook Pro several years back when they claimed they rebuilt it from the ground up, and it was the exact same thing except with Retina display and upgraded parts. Nothing "innovative" about that.

They have made advances, I'm not disputing this. So has Samsung, Nokia, Microsoft... the list goes on. Bill Gates announced a tablet years before the iPad and nobody bats an eye. Steve Jobs does it and everyone loses their minds. The iPod was rip-off of an old HP MP3 player that everyone claimed was useless.

They're not *big time* innovators. They are a tech company like many others. They simply have a huge following and tons of media coverage.

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That will compel companies to make cheaper and better quality wireless headphones and before you know it, wired headphones are a thing of the past.
This is a plausible hypothesis. Increase demand and supply goes up. More companies enter the market and profit margins drop as other companies sell closer to the cost of production. They will always have a name brand that's overpriced though. Remember Skull Candy headphones? Those used to be retarded expensive. They perform the same, but they're not "in" anymore so they're cheap now.

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I do think that companies have a desire to improve aspects of society or at least improve the ease with which people navigate through life even if the impetus is to make tons of money (which it probably is).
It is. A business exists to increase share holder profits, that's it. Apple is making things more convenient because convenience sells. I'd be willing to bet money they have absolutely no interest in improving your life or that of society. They want to make it easier for you to share data so they can sell it. They also probably have an entire department dedicated to social responsibility efforts so they can claim they care, but that budget pales in comparison to the developers they pay to create the means to dig through your personal life. I know this because I used to develop such software. Not for Apple, but just about every company now takes your data and sends it off for pennies per customer profits.

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They are in a position where they have such a strong cult following that they can force certain changes and a huge demographic will embrace it.
Almost every company has this though, that's why name brands cost more. People buy the same crap that everyone else sells because of brand loyalty. This is why branding is so important.

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Correct me if I'm wrong about this, but I don't see much in the way of wireless headphones marketed to the average consumer, so now Apple can fill this market and sell more accessories.
There's the problem, they're just not marketed. I have a pair of nice bluetooth headphones that I've had for a long time, probably over a year now. I never use them because it's stupid to walk around with your bluetooth radio on and searching/broadcasting. Same with WiFi, you're increasing the attack surface of your personal electronics.

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They already own Beats
*cough* crap overpriced headphones *cough*

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it's all profit driven.
The only reason you go into business.
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Old 09-24-2016, 06:28 AM   #4
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Default Re: Theory on headphone jack removal

It's probably a combination of a lot of things, but there may be a side that not many people have thought of...

At the moment there's a number of accessories that plug into the headphone jack other than headphones (because it's essentially a data port) - including card / NFC readers that can be used for taking payments from other devices. By removing that jack Apple has essentially shut them down, meaning that all payment driven stuff in the future will have to use Apple Pay...
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Old 09-24-2016, 06:10 PM   #5
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Default Re: Theory on headphone jack removal

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there may be a side that not many people have thought of...

[...]

meaning that all payment driven stuff in the future will have to use Apple Pay...


Didn't even think of that angle....
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Old 09-24-2016, 06:47 PM   #6
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Default Re: Theory on headphone jack removal

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Originally Posted by berry120 View Post
It's probably a combination of a lot of things, but there may be a side that not many people have thought of...

At the moment there's a number of accessories that plug into the headphone jack other than headphones (because it's essentially a data port) - including card / NFC readers that can be used for taking payments from other devices. By removing that jack Apple has essentially shut them down, meaning that all payment driven stuff in the future will have to use Apple Pay...
Wow. I totally forgot about all that stuff. I assume those devices will work with the headphone to lightning port adapter however. It's still kind of annoying and that's definitely something Apple would/is doing. Kill competition, funnel users into their different software/hardware proprieties, and profit.

I agree with a lot of the points made by others but I don't think that making a profit and improving society need to be mutually exclusive. Apple can kill two birds with one stone though I will definitely agree that profit will always come first.
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Old 09-24-2016, 07:56 PM   #7
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Default Re: Theory on headphone jack removal

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I don't think that making a profit and improving society need to be mutually exclusive. Apple can kill two birds with one stone though I will definitely agree that profit will always come first.
They don't have to be, not at all. I don't know how many people on this forum have ever been privy to a board meeting (I've only attended one as a fly on the wall), but you really see how decisions are made.

People do not matter. Society does not matter. The bottom line effecting the board's income is the only thing that matters. Projects, Departments, even people are reduced to a profit and loss statement. Once the line goes red, it's cut. If you're not earning money... cut.

Even with social responsibility projects, there's a return on investment equation. Again, remember branding. Companies don't want to look like the evil giant, so spend a fraction of a percent towards helping the community. Make employees go pick up trash or something but make sure labor hours don't exceed $X.

If Apple cared about improving society, they wouldn't have suicide nets around their Chinese factories... they'd be spending money to improve working conditions. Nets are cheaper.
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Old 09-27-2016, 01:32 AM   #8
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Default Re: Theory on headphone jack removal

First they get rid of removable batteries so you have to buy a new phone every year or two and now they want headphones to have batteries in them as well, and if I know Apple, they will not be removable either so you get a new set every couple of years. great. NOT
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Old 09-27-2016, 05:22 AM   #9
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Default Re: Theory on headphone jack removal

I believe apple never has had removable batteries.
That's not a bad thing in my opinion. If you look at the older Samsung galaxy flagship phones, you will see that they have a plastic back cover. I'll rather have metal or glass.

Not siding with apple btw. iPhones are too boring if you ask me and they all look the same both hardware and software wise.
This is some of the setups i have had over the years. Try to replicate this on iPhone.



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Old 09-27-2016, 07:25 AM   #10
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Default Re: Theory on headphone jack removal

My theory.

save the technology experience enhancing bull.

Quote:
they feel that wired headphones are antiquated. Why need wires? They get tangled, they can obstruct movement, etc. So with Apple removing the headphone jack they are essentially pushing people to make the move to bluetooth headphones (because maybe they'll find the adapter situations annoying).
Wires offer a better listening experience. I'm not talking gold plated snake oil here, it's just a simple fact that at this point in time, there is not a commonly used blutooth compression algorithm that offers the same bandwidth as a wire. assuming the DAC in the phone is any good (and it wasn't great in the last few apple phones anyway) then the cabled headphone experience was (and still is) a better listening experience.

as you have pointed out the adapter experience is going to leave the "UX" lacking.

It seems strange.
here we have a company that literally prides itself on making stuff that's easy to use, simple, minimal, intuitive going the same way as nokia trying to put all data and audio on a single port and bundling adapters with the product...


its the company that was rebuilt on the back of music, and the Ipod, listening to music isn't something unique to apple. but it's almost singularly what saved them from bankruptcy... and it's like they just forgot that...


Buy AirPods - Apple

Though, the launch of the new connectorless iphone co-insides quite nicely with the launch of the $150 airpod headphones. (given the terrible quality of the wired apple earbuds, I can't imagine many risking much on those...)


My expectations is that the new high priced accessory is a good reason that apple want to push BT headphones.
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