Headphone Jacks Are the New Floppy Drives

John Gruber breaks down an article by Nilay Patel of The Verge, who accuses Apple of being “user-hostile and stupid” if they’re to take away the headphone jack from the next iPhone. There’s probably a bit of projecting from my part, but I can make out a weary tone from Gruber having to defend the decision (a decision, while inevitable, is still unofficial and complete speculation), especially having just come from the MacBook’s great port purge of 2015.

For every reason Patel gives, Gruber makes it plain as day how much Patel misunderstands Apple, despite being a tech journalist for years now. Where it culminates is my case in point: Reason 6 is “No one is asking for this”, to which Gruber responds:

“No one” asked for the iMac to remove the floppy drive or switch from ADB ports to USB (at a time when PCs weren’t shipping with USB either, which meant few — I mean really few — existing USB peripherals on the market). There was a huge outcry when the iPhone 5 dumped the proprietary-but-ubiquitous 30-pin port for the proprietary-and-all-new Lightning port. MacBook Air fans are still complaining about the new MacBook’s solitary USB-C port.

This is how it goes. If it weren’t for Apple we’d probably still be using computers with VGA and serial ports. The essence of Apple is that they make design decisions “no one asked for”.

That said, things can still go in any way — as far as I’m concerned, nothing has happened in any official capacity as of yet. We’ll know how things work out in September.

What we could do now is look at similar decisions that have been made in the past as examples, most of which Apple have made, often spearheading the adoption of new standards. Gruber does this, and thinks history will repeat itself. I do, too.

Also, ever wondered why I kicked off The Verge from my “Regularly visited sites” list? This is a big reason why. 

Source: Daring Fireball