Friday Morning News
For the first time since the iPhone launched in 2007, Apple has proudly announced first weekend sales as a kind of badge of honour. It’s some part “look at how many iPhone’s we’ve sold in a tiny period of time”, some part “every year we sell more of these than ever before”, but this time around, they won’t be doing so. The reasoning behind is that Apple’s distribution network has expanded, and the numbers will reflect supply, rather than demand. With the iPhone 7 launching in 28 countries on day one instead of the usual two, three, or four, you can see what kind of a difference that will make to launch-weekend numbers.
TechCrunch argues that Apple’s move to remove the headphone jack from the iPhone 7 wasn’t about courage, but rather about leverage. It’s claimed that removing the headphone jack in favour of audio transmission over Lightning was a move designed only to benefit Apple, even if they are including Lightning EarPods in the box as well as the Lightning to headphone jack adapter. By removing the headphone jack, Apple now has more control over accessories that work with your iPhone.
The story of why Apple removed the headphone jackfrom BuzzFeed tells us about the bigger picture. It’s worse than the time Apple killed off its own 30-pin dock connector in favour of Lightning, because now millions (perhaps even billions) of headphones will be rendered incompatible with the iPhone 7 without a $12 adapter. But are there other considerations to removing the headphone jack than just space-saving, or pushing people towards wireless tech? You be the judge.
Speaking of wireless earphones, Kirk McElhearn calls Apple’s AirPods a mistake. Having no wire connecting both ends of the headphones truly emphasis the wireless nature of the headphones, but it also makes them prone to falling out of your ears and getting lost on the train, on a jog. And at $229, they’re not exactly cheap things to get lost, either.
The good news is, a hands-on with the AirPods says they sound great and stay in your ears. Even if you’re shaking your head from side to side in some kind of weird headbanging imitation, the new AirPods stay in your ears. Which is kind of weird, seeing as they look similar to Apple’s EarPods and you’d expect them to have the same ear-wearing characteristics (for lack of a better term). Not the case, says Macworld’s Susie Ochs.
While there are still many unanswered questions about the AirPods, an even more pertinent question is what happens when you want to listen to audio and charge your iPhone at the same time? Apple SVP of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller says you should consider purchasing the iPhone Lightning Dock for that purpose, which comes with a headphone jack and Lightning port. If you’re looking for a more portable solution, Belkin has announced they’ll be releasing a Lightning Audio and Charge dongle, which has two Lightning ports for charging and using a headphone adapter (or Lightning Earpods, if you so prefer). It’ll be available in October for US$40.
Jason Snell’s thoughts on yesterday’s media event tell us about his impressions on the new iPhone, AirPods, and the Apple Watch Series 2. The Mac and iPad were nowhere to be seen, as was expected.
Meanwhile, Jim Darylmple says the AirPods was the most interesting product to come from Apple yesterday, given that no company has done wireless right. It’ll be certainly interesting to see what kind of secret sauce Apple has put into their wireless tech to make it both more reliable and sound better than traditional Bluetooth audio.
In case you missed yesterday’s Apple event, Apple has published the video online for your viewing pleasure. There’s also Digg’s excellent summary of the event, with the release dates for Apple’s next bits of software. MacOS Sierra will be out September 20, and both watchOS 3 and iOS 10 will be out on September 13, a couple of days before the new iPhone.
But the funniest product to come out of yesterday’s headphone jack drama? Definitely the Apple Plug.