12 July 2016

Medium: “John Gruber Misses the Point Completely about Lightning Headphones”

What is good for Apple is not inherently good for you. There are times when what Apple does is in sync with what benefits their customers, such as in areas of privacy and security. But that same company released Apple Maps when it was literally years away from being ready for the real world, because it benefitted them to not deal with Google. The same company that forced U2 into everyone’s iTunes libraries without consent as a marketing ploy. The same company that made their music app frustratingly difficult to use so they could shove their subscription service into every nook and cranny of the user interface. Apple is not on your side by default.

John can argue all he wants that this is all somehow in the best interest of customers by virtue of it being great business for Apple, but it simply isn’t true. It also won’t be a hill that many customers will die on at the point of sale. People will not buy into Lightning headphones, they will put up with it. This transition will be painful and difficult because of just how thoroughly entrenched the current solution is, how little the new solution offers, and how many complications it adds for customers. Nilay is correct, it is user-hostile, and it is stupid.

But hey, it’s great for Apple.

Steve Streza

This rumor has been floating around literally for years and it has resurfaced again in the past weeks as people – or better said the tech press – are starting to get anxious about the next iPhone launch in the fall. Unfortunately, as much as people have debated the issue and examined it from all possible angles, there’s no tangible benefit for users in removing a standard connector for either Apple’s proprietary solution or wireless headphones. Wireless may sound like the better alternative, until you realize that people would need to charge wireless headphones regularly and they drain the smartphone battery faster than wired headphones (someone shared a statistic on that on Twitter, but I can’t seem to find that tweet anymore), so you also need to charge the phone more often… I don’t know about you, but while travelling I prefer to carry around a single pair of headphones rather than two different pairs (one for the laptop, one for the phone) or a pair of headphones accompanied by a charger – as if I don’t have enough chargers to carry between the different models needed for the iPhone, tablet and camera! I’m slowly getting tired of Apple’s restrictive and controlling modus operandi; at this rate I won’t be buying an iPhone the next time when I am due to upgrade my smartphone and I will do so with a sense of relief.

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