New iPhone 7 features slew of upgrades — but literally doesn’t have jack

Photo: Apple

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 7 (UPI) — Lucky number 7? Maybe — Maybe not.

Apple Inc., unveiled the latest edition of its flagship product on Wednesday — the new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. But while the new mobile device boasts a slew of improvements, the company might end up rethinking its decision to pull the plug on what had been a very standard feature.

The iPhone 7 was unveiled Wednesday morning at San Francisco’s Bill Graham Civic Auditorium to, as usual, global attention.

The new device features a list of upgrades, including an all-new 12-megapixel dual-lens camera, new color finishes, an improved “3D touch” display, a more powerful A10 Fusion processor, a new stereo speaker system and the iOS 10 operating system. The iPhone 7 is also water resistant.

“This [is] the best iPhone we have ever made,” Apple Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing Philip Schiller said in a news release. “The completely redesigned cameras shoot incredible photos and videos day or night.
“The A10 Fusion chip is the most powerful chip on any smartphone while delivering the best battery life ever in an iPhone, and an entirely new stereo speaker system provides twice the sound, all within the first water and dust resistant iPhone.”

The new colors available on the iPhone 7 are a matte and gloss black — in addition to the gold, rose gold and silver introduced last year.

Also new on the device is a “home” screen shortcut button, which no iPhone has ever had.


But despite all the technological upgrades, perhaps the most talked about feature of the new phone so far is what it doesn’t have — a standard 3.5-millimeter headphone jack.

For the iPhone 7, Apple chose to ditch the standard plug in favor of a “lightning” connector for earphones — which is to say they plug into the same port the charger does.

The main sticking point with that feature among many potential customers is that it renders most of the earphones presently on the market obsolete — and forces users to buy Apple phones, or an adapter.

Schiller used one word when explaining the motive behind killing the standard jack — “courage.”

Some users, though, would choose a quite different adjective.

“It’s pathetic for Apple to fidget with the headphone jack and call it ‘courage,'” one person user said on Twitter.

“So Apple is getting rid of headphone jacks?” another tweeted. “Well I guess that’ll be what gets me to get an android phone.”

In a move to capitalize on the jack’s omission, Apple will begin selling wireless earphones this fall at a price of $160.

The iPhone 7 itself will begin selling pre-orders on Friday and they will be available in stores Sept. 16.


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