We are not sure about it so don't blame us if it isn't so! However, from the latest barrage of leaks, photos and renders, it seems like OnePlus has done something that Chinese smartphone makers are often accused of doing; they have copied Apple and dropped the beloved 3.5mm headphone jack... Check out some of the photos yourself and let us know if you think these are fakes or if it is indeed the sad truth. They do look mighty realistic though, unfortunately...
Nevertheless, the OnePlus 5's dual camera (which is all but confirmed at this point) does look pretty sick and there are after all quite a few perks like Lossless audio and virtual surround sound associated with delivering audio via the USB Type-C port. Also, just like all other manufacturers, I am pretty sure OnePlus will at least be bundling in the adapter, if not the USB Type-C headphones. I will never understand why you would skimp out on a headphone jack if you have the room, but that seems to be the norm nowadays. On a positive note, the Galaxy S8 and S8+ still does retain their headphone jacks, so you will always have the best Android flagship smartphone of 2017 (yet) to fall back on if the OnePlus 5 fails its fans.
Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)
LeEco had done it before Apple, but Apple had got the worst of it when it comes to fan hate over ditching the headphone jack. In fact, Samsung themselves had mocked Apple on that decision while unveiling the Galaxy Note 7 in August. However, certain websites have been reporting that Samsung will go in the same direction by excluding the 3.5mm headphone jack from their next flagship smartphone. After doing a bit of research, we have come to a conclusion that there is no hard fact or report to confirm or strongly indicate such a decision.
It is true that Samsung CAN do so if they choose to, as the technology to deliver Continual Digital Lossless Audio (CDLA) via USB Type-C is definitely there for Android and will even sound better, especially to audiophiles. However, given that the 3.5mm audio jack is still extremely popular, it might be a while before we see everyone adopting the tech and the customers getting adjusted to them. Until we hear something more concrete, we will reserve our predictions for now.
Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)
When it comes to the headphone jack, a majority of users prefer to have it on their smartphones, while almost every one of the major manufacturers has gotten rid of it.
Up until now, Samsung was one of the last manufacturers that had supported the headphone jack even in its flagship smartphones, however, according to information published on Android Police, the Galaxy Note 10 will finally be that device which will mark Samsung's move to the Dark Side!
If the report is to be believed, then not only will the Galaxy Note 10 lack a smartphone jack, it will remove all physical buttons on the device altogether, including the volume buttons and even the Bixby button. They will apparently be replaced by capacitive touch buttons, but it's likely just an imaginative rumor.
I am not sure about whether they will remove the physical buttons, but at this point, it's almost a guaranteed fact that the Note 10 won't have a 3.5mm port, since Samsung has already started to launch smartphones and tablets without the headphone jack in 2019. The galaxy A80, the Galaxy Fold and the Galaxy Tab S5e being prime examples.
While everyone keeps saying that ditching the headphone jack allows for bigger batteries and slimmer devices, I will never understand people's obsession with slimmer devices!
It's not like I prefer a fat, ugly smartphone over a slim and beautiful one, but at this point, you have to ask how much slim is too slim? I mean if a bigger battery and a headphone jack can be incorporated in a device that's slightly thicker than what it would be without the headphone jack, does it really matter? Is our superficial nature leading us to sacrifice common sense and practicality over irrelevant "slimness?"
It is understandable when Apple users support it, because they don't know better to be honest, and there is no competition that you can switch over to. if you are already invested in the iOS ecosystem. In case of Android users and manufacturers though, it is something to think about for sure. Let us know in the comments what you think!
Courtesy of @OnLeaks and MySmartPrice, we have renders of the upcoming Google Pixel 2 on display here. The video shows off the Google Pixel 2 in beautiful 3D rendering and while it really does look light years ahead of the Google Pixel in terms of design, we couldn't help but notice that it's missing the 3.5mm audio jack. Do take a look at the video above and let us know what you think about this decision by Google, if it really does turn out to be the case of course.
Personally, I have never understood the logic behind removing the headphone jack from a smartphone and that is only because there is no logic behind it, just business. It costs next to nothing, doesn't interfere with any other functionality and is something that is preferred by a large section of the customer base. Even if you are all for the "wireless revolution," a headphone jack doesn't stop the smartphone from being compatible with wireless technology or the user from using wireless headphones if he/she wants to. It has more to do with business and marketing than actual usefulness because even if you could shave a few centimeters of a smartphone by eliminating the headphone jack, it hardly matters. Most people would rather have a headphone jack than a paper-thin phone!
Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)
There have been a lot speculations about Apple's plan to get rid of the headphone port in the next smartphone - the iPhone 7. Recently in China there was an announcement of three devices without any headphone port and they all run on Android.
LeEco, previously LeTV, yesterday unveiled the new Le 2 series, showcasing the Le 2, Le 2Pro and Le Max2, none of which feature the widely used 3.5mm headphone jack. All of these devices will come with USB Type-C digital headphones via the charging port.
This would result in improved audio quality, as digital headphones are based on lossless technology. The negative point is that it won't be possible for anyone to listen to music while the phone is getting charged (something that most of the folks do while working). That means although the USB Type-C headphones are nice to have feature, consumers might end up paying for a pair of Bluetooth headphones.
Until the introduction of LeEco's two new pairs of USB Type-C headphones - an in-ear variant and over-ear set - the JBL Reflect Aware C sports earbuds made it official alongside the HTC 10 that they were the only USB Type-C headphones available (till now they are not in the market). To conclude we can safely say that this trend might set the direction for next gen smartphones.
Modular is a company created by audiophiles and music lovers who decided to come together in their inaugural entrepreneurial venture and launch a new and revolutionary range of headphones that are not only surprisingly affordable, but also boast of high audio quality. The Mod-1 Bluetooth headset is the flagship product of the company and it's meant for long daily use both indoors and outdoors. So the question is, does it live up to the expectations set so far by Modular or does it fail to impress? Let's find out in our review of the Modular Mod-1 wireless Bluetooth headset.
In the Box
Modular sends in a neatly packed box that contains an auxiliary cable, a USB cable for charging the headphone, a quick start manual and of course, the headphones themselves. Depending on the color that you chose, the headphones will either come in rose gold, gunmetal or black. It doesn't contain a whole lot but the included auxiliary cable is a nice little touch that users will appreciate.
When it comes to features, Modular has packed the Mod-1 to the gills with them. To know what we are talking about here, take a look at the following list of the headphone's feature set.
• Compatibility with all devices running on iOS or Android
• Compatible with ANY Bluetooth enabled device out there
• Adjustable headband with modular earpads that can be easily changed or replaced
• 3.5mm audio jack is retained for wired connections to your computer or smartphone
• Usability even while being charged
• On-headphone buttons for controlling the volume, playing, pausing, skipping and making calls
• In-built FM radio transmitter
• Included mic for taking and making calls
• Noise reduction
• Can read and play music from microSD cards
• 400mAh battery makes sure that it runs all day on a single charge
While the features of the Mod-1 do sound quite impressive, let's now take a look under the hood to see what kind of hardware it's packing and if it's really as impressive as the features say it is.
• Input: 5V DC 500mA and Output: 3W×2 RMS
• Speaker: 4Ω, 3W, ⌀40mm
• Frequency Response: 27Hz-20kHz
• Signal to Noise Ratio: ≤70dB
• Total Harmonic Distortion: ≤0.3%
• Battery: 400mAh
• Charging Time: ≤2 Hours for full charge
• Maximum Power Consumption: 500mA
As it turns out, the Mod-1 does pack the hardware to deliver the quality features that it promises, so that's a big bonus!
After using it for some time, we have come to the conclusion that the Mod-1 wireless Bluetooth headset by Modular is an excellent pair of headphones in almost every possible way. Aside from packing in more features that nearly every other headset in the price range, it also produces surprisingly crisp sound for the price you pay for these. Add all that to the fact that you can basically wear these around for hours due to the lightweight and the dependable battery life, and it becomes very hard not to recommend the Modular Mod-1 to anybody who is looking to buy a pair of quality Bluetooth headsets without breaking the bank.
Lenovo has just unleashed a brand new series, which will replace the Moto X series of smartphones, starting from 2016. Both the phones in the new Z-series will come with top tier specs like a SD 820 CPU, a 5.5-inch QHD panel, 4GB of RAM and even the choice for 32GB/64GB in-built storage (along with expandable SD card slots). The regular Moto Z will sport a 13-megapixel rear sensor with laser autofocus, optical image stabilization and a dual tone LED flash for pitch dark conditions. On the front, there's the 5-megapixel snapper with a dedicated selfie-flash and a wide angle lens for group selfies. All this will be powered by the Quick charging 2,600mAh battery inside the Z.
The Moto Z Force has the bigger 3,500mAh battery and a shatterproof glass on the front. Lenovo calls the glass "ShatterShield" and they are confident that it cannot be broken by even the roughest of falls. The thicker and more premium device also features a higher resolution 21-megapixel sensor with phase detection laser autofocus, optical image stabilization and an aperture of f/1.8 for low-light photography. In spite of the flagship specs, what we did not like is the missing headphone jack that we have grown accustomed to. Although an USB Type-C to headphone adapter is included in the box, it means that you cannot simultaneously use the Type-C port for charging or data syncing, while listening to the headphones.
In addition to the missing 3.5mm jack, the two Moto phones also bring something else that the market is just getting accustomed to. Both phones have 16 magnetic dots at the lower-back area and they are equipped to connect with the "Moto Mods." Similar to what we saw with the LG G5 modular phone that was released earlier this year, the Moto Mods are modular accessories created specifically for the Moto Z smartphones to enhance the device's already impressive capabilities. There's the InstaShare Projector mod and some stylish case mods, but we found the JBL Soundboost mod to be the most impressive with its twin 3W speakers and a 1,000 mAh battery to boost the phone's usage time.
As is evident, the Moto Z and the Moto Z Force has a LOT to offer, but you will have to wait till September to get your hands on one, if you are outside the US. Verizon in the US however, will release their "Droid Editions" sooner.
Author: Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)