3.5mm Audio Jack

Discussion: Manufacturers to Revive Audio Jack In 2021 Starting With Samsung Galaxy S21

What started with the LeeCo LE 2, has reached almost every flagship phone which was the 3.5mm audio jack cancellation decision with the introduction of Type-C port. Most users view the decision of canceling the traditional 3.5mm audio jack as the worst decision in smartphone history. Most reviewers always marked the absence of the audio jack as one of the cons of a smartphone. Even though the Type-C port was a good choice (we also had the Bluetooth connection) here but there were some problems as well, including:

  • Users unable to charge and listen to music/play game at the same time
  • The availability and price of Type-C earphones and the famous earphones available in 3.5mm

Did you know?
OPPO released the first phone without a 3.5mm audio jack and was called OPPO Finder.
OnePlus 8 Type-C Port
Credit: Neowin

What is Benefit of Cancelling the 3.5mm Audio Jack?

The following where the benefits of removing the 3.5mm Audio Jack:

  • More space saved in a smartphone
  • Increase revenue and save cost for manufacturers
  • Thickness decreased of smartphone
  • Better audio transmission in Type-C (Lossless audio, CDLA technology)

The Decision of Reviving the Audio Jack in 2021

It looks like due to the majority of users not accepting the 3.5mm audio jack cancellation, manufacturers have started to revive audio jack in 2021, especially in flagship-level phones. Samsung is the first one to do so as it has just announced that it will be bringing back the audio jack in the next year’s Samsung Galaxy S21 series .

The validity remains in question, however, one thing is sure that reviving the 3.5mm audio jack is sure a wise option.

What About True Wireless Stereo Technology Introduced Right After 3.5mm Audio Cancellation?

If we remember correctly, Apple’s first phone without the 3.5mm audio jack was iPhone 7 and just to cover that Apple released the TWS earphones known as AirPods. Today, there are numerous TWS earphones available ranging from as low as $10 to as high as $500. However, there are some pros and cons as well of TWS technology:

Pros

  • Wireless experience
  • More convenient to store

Cons

  • Sound quality not as good as in wired earphones
  • High latency especially when playing games

I’ll say:

Surely, True Wireless Stereo Technology is the Future Trend, but the World Isn’t Ready for It Yet!

Both Bluetooth and true wireless headsets need to be developed over a period of time. It cannot be said that as soon as true wireless headsets appear, I will completely stop using the 3.5mm headphone jack as soon as possible. Such behavior is very difficult for consumers to accept.

Now some traditional wired headset manufacturers (KZ, QCY Blon, Sony, etc) are also experimenting with Bluetooth headsets and TWS must be a major trend.

QCY T5 earbuds resting

But there is no mature and complete solution yet, and the 3.5mm headphone jack has been eliminated across the board, which is bound to be criticized.

For now, it is necessary to develop true wireless earphones or Bluetooth earphones on the basis of retaining the 3.5mm headphone jack, and consumers should have a choice between wired and wireless.

An Adapter Could Be Solution To Removing 3.5mm Audio Jacks

There are adapters to cope up with the absence of 3.5mm audio jack giving them the option to charge and listen at the same time. However, is it really convenient? I mean the adapter itself has some weight and can you play games or watch a movie using the adapter? Surely you can, but it will be too uncomfortable.

Type-C adapter

I am very happy that some manufacturers like Samsung are reconsidering bringing the 3.5mm headphone jack back, and instead of re-equipped with the 3.5mm headphone jack on their own low-end phones, they are returning to their top flagship models.

What do you think? Should manufacturers start reviving the 3.5mm audio jack in their phones especially the flagship ones? Let’s discuss in the comments!

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