Apple Inc. (AAPL) co-founder Steve Wozniak, who left the company in 1985, has said leaving out the headphone jack on the iPhone 7 will hurt sales. (See also, Apple to Launch 3 New iPhones in 2017)

Speaking to the Australian Financial Review he said, “If it's missing the 3.5mm earphone jack, that's going to tick off a lot of people.I would not use Bluetooth … I don't like wireless. I have cars where you can plug in the music, or go through Bluetooth, and Bluetooth just sounds so flat for the same music.” Wozniak was in Australia to judge the annual Talent Unleashed technology innovation awards. He clarified that there are ways Apple could make this work. He said, “If there's a Bluetooth 2 that has higher bandwidth and better quality, that sounds like real music, I would use it. But we'll see. Apple is good at moving towards the future, and I like to follow that.”

Apple is widely rumored to be launching its iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus models in September. Rumors that the new models will not have headphone jacks and instead will include wireless Bluetooth earphones have also circulated. (See also, Apple iPhone 7 Release Date a Guessing Game)

Experts have argued that removing the headphone jack will make the phone more durable. In the place of the 3.5 mm jack, we’re seeing the rise of ports that can be used for multiple purposes like charging and transferring of files as well as audio. Apple may develop its lightning wire cable port for output to wired headphones and build its own headphones compatible with these phones or iPhone users may have to reply on adaptors to connect to the lightning port. 

A few phones powered by Android like Huawei’s Google Nexus 6P, Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 and the Xiaomi Mi 5 have USB C ports, which are predicted to be the technology of the future by companies like Intel and Wozniak himself. One of my favourite Android phones, the Nexus 5X, uses that connector. He said, "It gives it a higher level in my own thinking." This shift from analog to digital technology will make phones slimmer, waterproof and improve audio quality, but audiophiles may have to wait for headset manufacturer to catch up or use adaptors.

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