There's been a steady stream of rumors concerning Apple ditching the 3.5mm headphone jack on the iPhone 7 — or whatever the next generation flagship ends up being called. This week the Wall Street Journal, which has a good record of accuracy on leaks, got in on the audio port action.
Perhaps someone got a peek at a prototype, or someone wanted to gauge consumer reaction, but either way, it once again set the internet to arguing. To be clear, few outside of Infinite Loop have any real information about the next iPhone and those that do aren't talking. Those who are talking, well, probably don't have much if any real information.
Rumors and rage
With the rumor mill reaching its usual height of summer silliness, it's the commentary that becomes most interesting to me. People argue over rumors that may or may not be true, often with the same level of passion and prejudice as politics.
Personally, I don't think Apple will remove the headphone jack at the time, but I also didn't think Britain would vote to leave the European Union, so take my opinion for what it's worth.
I could make good arguments for removing the headphone jack, and I could also make good arguments for keeping it. If Apple, does decide to remove a headphone jack from the next iPhone, it might make sense to wait, and perhaps see what Apple's logic is.
It's highly unlikely Apple would make any move like this without some good reason. So, taking a deep breath, stepping back, and waiting to see what Apple has to say when they announce the next iPhone might be wise before pontificating about the latest rumors.
Smiles and sighs
Since I worked at Apple, I'm often asked what employees think behind closed doors when they see these rumors and read the debates. The answer is, not much. Maybe a smile, maybe a sigh if the conversations are particularly off base, or if they miss the point entirely about what might finally be announced.
I have no doubt there are all sorts of prototype iPhones floating around the labs, some with headphone jacks and some without. Some with LCD displays and some with AMOLED. Some with... well, I could go on and on.
And that's the real point. We could go around and around on any rumor, but for now, all of them, and all the debate around them, are like that tale told by that idiot:
Full of sound and fury, but signifying nothing.
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I’ve covered the personal technology beat for more than two decades at places like Gartner, Jupiter Research and Altimeter Group. I’ve also had the fun of contributing my $.02 on the topic at Computerworld, Engadget, Macworld, SlashGear and now iMore. Most recently I spent a few years at Apple as Sr. Director of Worldwide Product Marketing. On Twitter I’m an unverified @gartenberg. I still own some Apple stock.