Steve Wozniak, who single-handedly developed Apple's first computer, has advised Apple not to remove the headphone jack from the next iPhone.

One of the more interesting - and, largely unpopular - rumours around the iPhone 7 is that Apple will remove the standard 3.5mm headphone jack. This is supposedly in order to make the phone slimmer and to move users towards the Apple Lightning connection.

Now Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has chimed in on the debate, saying it would be a bad move to remove the headphone port and that Bluetooth headphones, which Apple is expected to move towards, don't sound good enough. 

"If it's missing the 3.5mm earphone jack, that's going to tick off a lot of people," Wozniak told The Australian Financial Review. "I would not use Bluetooth … I don't like wireless. I have cars where you can plug in the music, or go through Bluetooth, and Bluetooth just sounds so flat for the same music."

"If there's a Bluetooth 2 that has higher bandwidth and better quality, that sounds like real music, I would use it. But we'll see. Apple is good at moving towards the future, and I like to follow that."

The quality of wireless Bluetooth streaming has certainly improved in recent years - and aptX HD promises to improve Bluetooth sound quality further - but it's clear 'Woz', like many others, isn't enamoured with the idea of ditching the headphone jack.

More after the break

If Apple does remove the headphone connection, you'll have to buy a new pair of Apple Lightning headphones, go wireless, or use an adaptor - far from ideal, says Wozniak. "[My earphones] have custom ear implants, they fit in so comfortably, I can sleep on them and everything. And they only come out with one kind of jack, so I'll have to go through the adaptor."

It wouldn't be the first time Apple has mercilessly ditched a port, having replaced the 30-pin connector with the Lightning connection, marking the end of the beginning for millions of docks and accessories and heralding a new era in wireless streaming from phones to speakers.

Is the headphone jack next in line? All is likely to be revealed early September when Apple reveals the new iPhone.

MORE: 6 of the best Bluetooth headphones


Ollie Watkins's picture

Drop the jack, its old hat

Surely it's time to drop the headphone jack. The lightning adapter would be tiny and you'd leave it on your favourite headphones anyway so no big deal there. It also focus the market to move which is something everyone is so oddly against... for the average listener Bluetooth sound quality is MORE than acceptable.

Change before you have to - Its one of the few things I like about Apple.

joe23's picture

Sound quality?

Let's face it, none of the decisions Apple make are EVER based around sound quality. The fact that pretty much 100% of the best headphones on the market have 3.5mm jacks clearly carries no water for a company that makes enormous profits from selling accessories, so another £25 adaptor is not going to upset too many Apple fanbois. The fact is that if you're serious about music on the move, then you're not using an Apple device anyway as every single one of them sounds dreadful compared to a good dedicated audio player that can drive a pair of quality headphones. Using Bluetooth would be a negligable difference.

Sven Dijkstra's picture

Leaving the 3.5 inch jack is no problem

Ok, it is something a very famous formal Apple develloper sayz. It must be taken sereously. 

For me it will be a step into a bright tech future to kick off that museum part of the 3.5 inch headphone jack. But in my case, i have no complains with my bluetooth equipment, state of the art modern stuff who fastly connects my Apple devices with it.

In my opinion the lightning connection is allready an old artifact. Why should you charge the battery with a lousy cable? Lay or pin your Apple device with an induction charger, or charge the battery when you jogging in a park through running energy.

So, don't be scare about new technologies, adebt the posibilities of what is posible and wondering about the magic Apple had invent. It is always the core Apple stands for. 

Maybe it is time to say goodbye to old headphone systems, nobody at this time still use VHS video recorders anymore, and would you?


Mark Straver's picture

On the contrary mr Wozniak, losing the jack is a great step

Mr Wozniak claims to dislike the sound quality of wireless, but seems to be indifferent to the DAC's of iPhones. Those headphone jacks were just as bad and at least now the iPhone's size is not constrained by a feature which is not even much better than contemporary Bluetooth 4.0. Personally, I prefer using the Lightning connection in combination with a small external DAC anyway.