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Apple co-founder: don't remove headphone jack on iPhone 7

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.

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

Joe Cox
Joe Cox

Joe is Content Director for Specialist Tech at Future and was previously the Global Editor-in-Chief of What Hi-Fi?. He has worked on What Hi-Fi? across print and online for more than 15 years, writing news, reviews and features. He has covered product launch events across the world, from Apple to Technics, Sony and Samsung, reported from CES, the Bristol Show and Munich High End for many years, and provided comment for sites such as the BBC and the Guardian. In his spare time he enjoys playing records and cycling (not at the same time).