When Apple removed the headphone jack from the iPhone 7 it was, and still is, a controversial decision that divided people into two camps. While irritating that wired headphone users would either need to switch to Lightning headphones or use an adaptor, Apple was gracious enough to put both into the box. That good grace might not be continuing for long, though.
Cowen analyst Matthew D. Ramsay claims that Apple audio supplier Cirrus Logic's recent Q2 guidance "all but confirms that Apple will not bundle the DAC headset converter 'dongle' in its new iPhone models."
While unconfirmed by both Apple and Cirrus Logic, this isn't likely to go down that well. Wired headphones are still very commonplace, despite certain phone companies desperately trying to ditch the old analogue audio cables in favour of newer alternatives. Tablets, phones, games consoles, laptops, and so on all use the same 3.5mm headphone port, and not everything has support for Bluetooth. So they live on, and in great quantities.
Why Apple might do this is unclear. Maybe it's discovered a large number of people don't bother using it, or that putting them in every single iPhone box is uneconomical. Maybe it wants to boost sales of its wireless headphone range, which is rumoured to be expanding later this year. It could also be that it wants to hand all responsibility over to third parties, who were recently allowed to start manufacturing Lighting/3.5mm cables. It's not an adaptor, but it would still work as an alternative for most wired headphone owners.
We'll have to wait and see whether this rumour ends up being true or not. If it is, Apple will hopefully have enough sense to keep the 3.5mm adaptor in stock, albeit in smaller quantities, rather than ditching it completely. All that would do is create an overpriced second hand market, or hand the responsibilities to a third party. [Apple Insider via Ubergizmo]