If there is a place for an S Pen, there sure is a place for a headphone jack

This article may contain personal views and opinion from the author.
If there is a place for an S Pen, there sure is a place for a headphone jack
I know — it's a losing game, rooting for the comeback of the headphone jack in 2022, but someone's got to do it.

Now that leaks have spilled the beans on the Galaxy S22 Ultra in its entirety, I have to say it: if Samsung could fit a freaking entire S Pen in a phone about the same size as last year's S21 Ultra, it sure could also fit a headphone jack in there too.

The war on the headphone jack has been mostly won when it comes to flagships. iPhones, Galaxies, OnePlus phones, even Motorola's top phones have all gotten rid of the pesky (but useful) jack, and only a few outliers like the Asus ROG Phone 5 and Sony's Xperia 1 III still supported the feature in 2021.

But now, companies have also waged war on the headphone jack in more affordable phones too. Seemingly, the thinking in phone makers' executive circles goes like this: "if they have money to buy an expensive phone, they also have more money to buy wireless headphones, hence... let's kill the headphone jack in expensive devices!" Because that is exactly what phone makers behavior tells us.

On the bright side, what this meant conversely was also instructions to leave the jack alone in mid-range and budget phones. So you could still enjoy a decent device like the Google Pixel 5a or the Galaxy A52 with a headphone jack.

The "headphone jack or big battery" argument is false

Quick stop right here: do you see any "courageous" argument here? Do you see budget phones with noticeably smaller batteries because the headphone jack they have occupies too much space? Not really, budget phones are dominating battery life ranks and the Pixel 5a is a brilliant example, this thing lasts on and on.

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By now it should be clear that there is not much merit in the "headphone jack or big battery life" argument. The argument that does make a lot of sense, however, is for phone makers to do everything they can to push users towards wireless headphones that have insane profit margins and have to be replaced every 3 years or so because it's impossible to replace the batteries on most of them. Cynical? Sure. But this theory at least has a clear monetary motive and is not explained by endearing terms like... "courage."

The big business of wireless headphones

In fact, wireless headphones are such good business that OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei quit the company to start his own wireless headphone venture. Not to mention the hundreds of brands that make wireless headphones, this truly is a modern gold rush.

Going back to our beautiful world of technology, now, in 2022, the time has come to expand the war against the headphone jack to those devices too. One of the most popular phones in the world, the upcoming Galaxy A53 series, is also getting rid of the headphone jack, and rumors for the Pixel 6a also say the headphone jack is gone, and... it's just a bit too much to take in.

Sure, the very cheapest phones out there like the Galaxy A33 are expected to keep the jack, but it will only be a few years until those too lose that one defining feature.

Why did they remove the headphone jack? Follow the money!

See, traditional wired headphones are nothing extraordinary. They just work. They don't need to be charged. I have been using a pair of free Samsung headphones from a Galaxy phone from back in the day for probably 5 years now, and the mic on them still sound better than even the most expensive AirPods. And I'll probably still be using them in 5 years time. Sure, the cable is a bit of a nuisance, but not something that bothers me for video conferencing where I have to sit anyway, like so many people out there.

The big problem with wired headphones is just that: they are too good! They don't require replacement every couple of years or so. They just don't bring those sweet profits. Don't get me wrong, I also use wireless headphones occasionally, and I enjoy them. I just don't see how that warrants removing support for something so reliable like wired headphones. Call me cynical, but their reliability is exactly why I think big tech insists on removing support for them.

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