Listening to music and charging your iPhone 7 at the same time costs extra
One of the most talked-about changes in the iPhone 7 is its lack of a 3.5mm headphone jack.
Inside the box, you no longer get a pair of 3.5mm EarPods. Instead, you get a pair of Lightning EarPods, as well as a Lightning-to-3.5mm adapter, which will allow you to continue using your analog headphones.
But, there’s a catch. If you want to listen to your wired headphones — even the new Lightning EarPods — and your phone is in need of a charge, you’ll need to buy an extra adapter or go wireless.
Here are some of the options for listening with headphones as you charge your iPhone 7.
Apple’s Lighting Dock. Apple sells an iPhone Lightning Dock. It’s $49 (£49, AU$75), and it holds the iPhone upright with nothing more than a rigid Lightning connection. It has a Lightning port on the back for its power supply and flanking that port is a 3.5mm jack. Presumably, this is geared more toward running a 3.5mm cable from the dock to a sound system, but it could work as a work-around solution for jamming out with analog headphones while charging. That said, it isn’t going to be pretty.
Apple AirPods wireless earphones
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Belkin’s adapter. Third-party accessory maker Belkin has created the Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar adapter, which allows passthrough charging via Lightning while also listening to Lightning-compatible headphones. However, it isn’t cheap either. It’s $40 (£30.07 or AU$52.32), and if you want to listen to 3.5mm headphones, you will still need use a second adapter — the one included with the iPhone.
Bluetooth headphones. In the end, you might decide to invest in a pair of Bluetooth headphones, which start for around $20 (£15.05 or AU$26.18) online. But they quickly go up in price, especially if you want quality Bluetooth headphones. The cheapest ones on Apple’s website are $100 (around £75 or AU$130), and only go up from there.
No matter how you cut it, some of the workarounds are unsightly, and all of them will cost a fair amount of money to accomplish something that was quite simple before.