Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has some advice for his former firm: get better Bluetooth or stick with the iPhone headphone jack.
Rumors suggest Cupertino might abandon the headphone jack in an upcoming iOS device in favor of wireless technology. That would force consumers to buy an adapter to connect existing wired accessories with the new phone, which Wozniak says will "tick off a lot of people," he told The Australian Financial Review this week.
The engineer and entrepreneur, like most other iPhone users, is fairly attached to his earbuds (which, in Woz's case, are custom implants so comfortable he can sleep on them).
An online petition began circulating earlier this year, asking Cupertino to preemptively change its mind about the no-jack handset. "Not only will this force iPhone users to dole out additional cash to replace their hi-fi headphones, it will singlehandedly create mountains of electronic waste—that likely won't get recycled," the petition argued.
With more than 300,000 signatures to date, the appeal is still open to more supporters hoping to #SaveJack.
But it's not just the hassle of connecting multiple accessories before a jam session at the gym. Like the difference between an digital mp3 and a vinyl album, Bluetooth just doesn't cut it for Woz.
"I would not use Bluetooth," he told the AFR. "I have cars where you can plug in the music, or go through Bluetooth, and Bluetooth just sounds so flat for the same music."
Of course, if Apple upgraded to the latest version of Bluetooth—with higher bandwidth and better quality—Wozniak may be more willing to use it. "We'll see," he said. "Apple is good at moving towards the future, and I like to follow that."
And though it's unlikely Cupertino will ditch Lightning for USB Type-C, Wozniak said USB-C gives one of his favorite Android phone, the Nexus 5X, "a higher level."
"I think USB-C is going to be the future," he added.
With Apple only weeks away from the expected unveiling of its next-generation iPhone, a prototype (pictured) recently surfaced online—sans headphone port.
In preparation for the upcoming influx of Lightning connector headphone attachments, check out PCMag's roundup of The Best iPhone 7 Wireless Headphones of 2016.