The story behind the phase-out of the 3.5mm headphone jack in smartphones is a complex one. It’s easy to blame Apple for igniting this malicious trend of removing features from our phones, and even easier if we take a look at the company’s wireless earbuds sales numbers and market share.
But it’s not always that simple. Samsung has argued that ditching the headphone jack was a design-driven solution to make phones slimmer and prettier, and yet there are models on the market today that are just as slim without sacrificing the 3.5mm jack.
Things get even more complicated if we try to objectively lay down the pros and cons of this little audio hole. On one hand, you can use your old (or any) wired pair of headphones, they don’t need charging and can last practically forever.
On the other hand, being tethered to your phone is inconvenient and many wired models don’t sport smart features like touch controls, ANC and voice activation.
But then again, wired headphones can receive high-quality, high-resolution audio, while Bluetooth buds are limited by connection bandwidth, speed, and energy requirements, and there’s no such thing as lossless Bluetooth audio, not really.
Let’s flip the coin once more and say that many people can’t really hear the difference between the so-called lossless audio and a nicely encoded MP3 file. There are tons of blind tests that show this. So, the question is not a simple one, even before we consider using an adapter (which is an option, despite all potential drawbacks).
As much as everyone hates seeing features gone from their devices, do we really need the 3.5 mm headphone jack in 2021? Vote in the poll and let us know what you think in the comment section below.