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Next iPhone Could Ditch the Headphone Dongle

It looks like Apple plans to ask iPhone shoppers to show a little more courage.

A Barclays research note spotted by MacRumors claims the iPhones shipping this fall won't have a headphone jack adapter. If accurate, it means that if you want to use wired headphones on the next iPhones, you would either need to buy your own dongle to plug into the Lightning port on your new phone or use wireless headphones. (Apple probably will be happy to recommend a pair.)

Credit: Tom's Guide

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Apple dropped the headphone jack from its phones when it introduced the iPhone 7 nearly two years ago, famously praising its own courage for making the switch. Since then, Apple included an adapter with its jack-free iPhones that you could plug into the Lightning port and then attach the wired earbuds of your choice. The setup meant you couldn't charge your phone and listen to music simultaneously, but that was a trade-off iPhone owners not ready to switch to wireless headphones were willing to make.

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It's worth noting this is just a research report and not an official pronouncement by Apple on its plans for the upcoming iPhones. (Apple is notoriously tight-lipped about these sorts of things.) But the Barclays report cites a pretty convincing source: Cirrus Logic, which has supplied the adapter, apparently told Barclays that it's not being included with the 2018 iPhones.

Users won't be totally high and dry. A Lightning-to-3.5mm-headphone-jack adapter currently sells for $9 in Apple's online store. But expect some grumbling from iPhone customers that the adapter is no longer included with their $600-plus smartphone this fall, should the Barclays report pan out.

Apple is expected to come out with three phones this fall — a 6.1-inch entry-level iPhone, a 5.8-inch successor to the current iPhone X and a 6.5-inch iPhone X Plus. The trio of phones will allegedly adopt the iPhone X's design, though the 6.1-inch phone will reportedly use less expensive materials like an LCD screen to keep its price tag lower. A new version of the wireless AirPods could be in the works for the fall, too.