Apple’s dropping of the headphone jack was widely regarded as a huge and unbelievable mistake.
Starting with the iPod and later the original iPhone Apple made it’s name by providing the ability to bring your music with you wherever you went.
Fast forward a year and people seem to have largely let go of the anger they expressed when the all-lightning models were first released.
So why are people less angry about not having a headphone jack today?
Well, for one, Bluetooth headphones have absolutely exploded in popularity due to increased battery life, better, lighter designs and more reliable pairing technology, as exhibited by Apple’s own Airpods and the W1 chip.
Even more importantly though companies are finally releasing headphones with built-in lightning cables to use with Apple devices.
Unlike Bluetooth this is an entirely new and exciting market that promises to bring a whole variety of new functions and features to music lovers.
1. Battery Free Active Noise Cancellation
Unlike Bluetooth, lightning-cable powered headphones do not require independent battery sources as they draw power directly from the device. This means they are much more reliable in terms of how often you can use them. No longer do you have to check to make sure things are charged before heading to the gym or catching that next business flight.
Active noise cancellation is a marvelous technology, from drowning out noisy cafe’s to the harsh background noise of jet engines on flights.
Having to insert AAA batteries or use battery packs that had short life-spans made the technology iffy at best and unreliable at worse.
New lightning headphones have active noise cancellation technology built in using the power from the iPhone or iPad itself to run the technology. No more external batteries!
2. Better Quality Than Bluetooth Headsets
While Bluetooth is taking up all the spotlight today with new releases from nearly all major headphone manufacturers the fact remains: Bluetooth audio quality is not nearly as good as direct connected cable audio.
Numerous independent listening tests have been done that pair both Bluetooth against old 3.5mm headphone jack headphones as well as against lightning cable headphones and the results are always the same, Bluetooth gets destroyed by the cable options.
If you only listen to Top 40 pop songs maybe you don’t care so much about deep DEEP bass or high clear trebles, however if you are a true music lover you will always want to hear your music the way it was meant to be heard, and that will require connected headphones.
3. New App Market
One of the least talked about features of lightning cable headphones but one that is quickly growing in popularity are dedicated listening apps that headphone manufacturers are releasing to pair with their headphones.
Because the lightning connector is digital it can transmit both power and data of all kinds. Software engineers are making apps that allow listeners to fine tune their listening experience with more customization that is available with the stock iTunes music app.
Lightning headphone apps also allow users to customize the level of noise cancellation, microphone control, and many more features that didn’t exist with old fashioned headphones and is not available with most Bluetooth options.
There you have it, three huge features of lightning headphones that while quickly growing in popularity are still lesser known in the tech community as a whole.
We expect the features and functions of this new headphone type to continue to advance into full-blown “smartheadphones” territory.