Apple has included headphones with an iPhone from the get-go, but there have been some rumors swirling around that that could change at some point in the near future. Maybe as early as this year's iPhone, in fact. It's honestly kind of hard to imagine that we could see that day arrive, and yet it also feels like this is where Apple has been leading us for a couple of years now.
But are we ready for it?
When Apple introduced its first pair of truly wireless headphones, the AirPods, it did so alongside the iPhone X that also dropped the 3.5mm headphone jack. Now, we've talked about the headphone jack multiple times already, and some people still think it's a travesty that companies aren't including the option with their smartphones. Personally I'm indifferent towards it, but I absolutely understand where people's frustrations are coming from.
Of course, with the switch away from the headphone jack, Apple had to make some changes to the wired EarPods, too. They now connect directly to the Lightning port. And, just as we've seen from other companies, those wired headphones will connect directly to the USB-C port. Changes were made, but the end goal here is still a wireless reality for all customers.
I don't know about you, but I have a lot of headphones that I could connect to my iPhone if I wanted to. But ever since I've switched to AirPods and Surface Headphones I haven't needed the physical connection. But even if I did? I have some headphones handy to make that possible. So if Apple launches the iPhone 12 without wired headphones in the box, I wouldn't be missing much.
But I know that's not always the case for everyone. Some people rely on a new phone to get new headphones, and there's nothing wrong with that at all. Apple deciding to drop wired EarPods from the box would be a decision to (probably) reduce waste, save a little bit of costs, and potentially drive customers towards that wireless reality Apple wants so badly.
(Especially if those rumors of a port-less iPhone do end up coming true.)
One has to ask: what about including AirPods? Not AirPods Pro, of course, and not even AirPods with a wireless charging case. Just the standard AirPods. This, like so many other things, would fall into the category of something Apple could do, but probably (definitely?) won't do. But hey, giving customers who buy your $1,000+ iPhone a free pair of AirPods would definitely make them more accepting of a wireless future, right?
What do you think? Should Apple keep the wired headphones in the iPhone box? Or should the company move away from that "free gift"? Let me know!