Apple’s iPhone 7: Hit the Road, Jack!

The new iPhone has arrived and you can count me amongst those severely disappointed by it. As a long-time iPhone user, I was initially excited to hear what improvements Apple would make on it’s last release, the iPhone 6s. At the company’s launch event for the new device last week in San Francisco, though, it became clear that the theme for the iPhone 7 was, “If it ain’t broke, break it.”

In a shocking and seemingly unnecessary move, Apple has done away with the headphone jack on its new device. Yes, that’s right, there it now nowhere for you to plug in your headphones on the new iPhone. The 3.5 millimeter opening that has allowed us all to cleanly and clearly enjoy countless hours of music and video entertainment has been deemed obsolete by the ever-innovating tech company. And what prompted Apple to make such a move?

“It comes down to one word,” Apple marketing head Phil Schiller said. “Courage. The courage to move on and do something better for all of us.”

First of all, “Courage?” Give me a break. Schiller was roundly mocked online for the strange explanation behind the decision, and rightly so. Yes, Mr. Schiller, Apple really ran into the burning building and saved the family with its removal of the headphone jack.

Secondly, “something better for all of us?” I think he means, “something better for us.” You see, the decision to scrap the headphone jack coincides with the release of Apple’s Airpods, which are a pair of wireless headphones that connect to the iPhone via bluetooth. Sound-wise, the Airpods sound pretty much exactly the same as Apple’s basic, wired EarPod headphones. The Airpods, however, cost $160. As someone who regularly invests in higher-quality headphones, I simply refuse to pay that kind of money for such a low-end pair of headphones if their only redeeming factor is a lack of a cord.

And while wireless headphones may sound like a cool idea, they are really more of a burden. They need to be charged every five hours and come with a holder that doubles as a charging case. The charging case, of course, also needs to be charged. If only there was some way to avoid all of this charging. Say, I don’t know, how about a pair of headphones that connect directly to the phone via a cord that causes very little inconvenience during use? Apple should really get on that.

It goes without saying that these tiny headphones are a huge risk to carry around, as well. Based on how many pairs of headphones I have lost, I would probably be too paranoid to ever take the $160, thimble- sized buds out of their case. Indeed, many commenters online joked that they had lost their Airpods before they had even purchased them.

It should be pointed out that the iPhone 7 does come with a dongle that you can plug into the device’s lightning port in order to plug in a pair of wired headphones. This makes it impossible to use the headphones and charge the phone at the same time and there’s no telling how long Apple will sell the dongle as a package with the phone. And while the iPhone 7 has other improvements that sound great, such as water resistance and an improved battery life, the headphone jack debacle has put me over the edge. As a longtime iPod and iPhone user who loves listening to music through a good pair of headphones, it seems that it is time for me to “hit the road, Jack.” Android family, here I come.

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