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Samsung is ashamed it removed the headphone jack from the Note 10

This article may contain personal views and opinion from the author.
Samsung is ashamed it removed the headphone jack from the Note 10
The headphone jack. Rarely has something so small been in the center of countless heated discussions and arguments for so long. It’s been years since Apple started the war against the headphone jack by removing it from its iPhones, but even today, in 2019, it’s still something we talk about regularly.

Samsung was one of the last companies to keep the analog output on its flagships and even had ad campaigns to rub that fact into the competition’s faces. It seems, however, that we might have already seen the last of these commercials, as Samsung appears to have put a dagger in the back of the headphone jack as well. At first, it started innocent, with the old school port being omitted from one of the Galaxy A devices. But since the series offers plenty of models to choose from and they’re fairly similar, no one really made a fuss about it.

Recently, however, leaks about the upcoming Galaxy Note 10 have shown that the new Samsung flagship will come without a headphone jack on it. Yes, all leaks lead to the fact that Samsung will remove the headphone jack. And while I’m sure that by the time the Note 10 is released, Samsung will have a reasonable-sounding explanation as to why the headphone jack is gone, I have a sneaking suspicion the company itself is not proud with what it did.

Samsung removes the headphone jack: A major letdown for Note fans


What am I basing that on? Well, two things, mostly. Let’s start with the first one, which is fairly obvious: Samsung knows that it will face some serious backlash. Its Note devices are the phones for tech enthusiasts: packed with features, a big screen and even an S Pen that should or shouldn’t be there, depending on whom you’re asking. People that have the latest Galaxy Note can usually be sure that they’ve made no compromise in functionality when choosing this smartphone over the competition. But no more! Now, they have to make at least one sacrifice, and for some power users, even that is too much. Their beloved swiss-army-knife of a phone is now missing one of its tools. The phone that checks the most boxes now leaves one gapingly empty like a thorn in the eyes of Galaxy Note fans.

Many of them will become apologists, pointing out the benefits of this omission and saying things “most people use wireless headphones anyways” to justify Samsung’s actions and make it seem like the blow they had to take wasn’t that hard. This same group will be quick to point towards the Galaxy Buds for the audio needs of Note 10 owners. A pair of Samsung’s wireless earphones can potentially be part of the Note 10 preorder package, just like they were during the release of the S10 series.
 
Could Samsung’s guilt be so strong that it includes wireless earphones in the box of the Note 10 itself? That’s not a big stretch considering the ever-increasing price of the device. And it will surely please at least some of the outraged fans. Even so, that’s a bit of band-aid solution to the problem. Plenty of long-term Note users won’t settle for dongles or wireless headphones, however. And while Samsung would hate to disappoint them, there are always some casualties when making big changes like this one.

But let’s get to the second hint that Samsung is not looking forward to breaking the news about the headphone jack.

The mysterious phone positioning


Now, I know that’s a bit of a stretch, but hear me out! Look at this alleged promotional image for the Galaxy Note 10 that leaked a few days ago:



Do you notice anything odd about it? The phone is facing the wrong way. Instead of the camera being at the top right corner, it is in the bottom left corner. That’s a bit unusual considering the picture depicts the phone as if left on a table after you’re done working on it with the S Pen. Yet in that case, it’s laying the wrong way around. Of course, you can argue that the goal of this image is to showcase the small camera whole, after all, it was the centerpiece of the official teaser. But coincidentally, or maybe purposely, this position also hides the bottom part of the phone, keeping out of focus the fact that there’s no headphone jack to be found there.

Now, before you start pointing towards my tinfoil hat, let’s take a quick look at how the main picture for the Galaxy Note 9 looks. Right now, if you go to the smartphone’s page on samsung.com, you’ll be greeted with this:


An excellent look at the bottom of the Note 9, showcasing the slot for the S Pen, the USB Type-C port and the 3.5mm slot to plug in your favorite headphones. It’s a quick and easy way to showcase the Note 9’s many utilities. Just looking at this picture, you get the idea that this phone can do a lot. Meanwhile, our take from the Note 10 image is what? That it has a tiny selfie camera? That’s not something Note users even care about that much, some would probably get rid of the front-facing camera altogether. And while removing the headphone jack makes the Note 10 only marginally less useful, the problem is the message that it sends: features are going away. By offering this reverse angle to people, Samsung is avoiding an easy 1:1 comparison that would clearly show a major difference between the two devices that’s not favorable for the newer one. That is, unless…

Samsung has been pulling a fast one on us all along


In situations like this one, all theories must be considered, even if they might sound implausible. So, what do I mean, exactly? Well, there’s a possibility that everything written above is wrong because the initial assumption is wrong — the one that there will be no headphone jack on the Galaxy Note 10. After all, as credible as some of the sources are, there’s still a chance that they’re wrong and what they’re showing us isn’t exactly the device we’ll see at the official release.
We’ve played that game last year, when information about the Google Pixel 3 XL started pouring in and revealed its ugly notch. There was a glimpse of hope that it won’t be the real deal, but alas, the official Pixel 3 XL was the same phone we saw in the leaks.

But that doesn’t mean Samsung can’t do one better and with a quick switcharoo reveal a Galaxy Note that has all the ports we love and expect to see. In that case, the idea of the leaked imaged we discussed above might be to keep us on the edge for as long as possible, letting us fester in the uncertainty of the leaks and rumors. While that’s a long shot by any means, it will be glorious to see a smartphone manufacturer finally pulling off one of these marketing stunts. After that, of course, will come the ads showing how Samsung is still remaining true to its loyal fans and giving them what they want and all will be good in the world.

So, which scenario will unfold during the launch of the Note 10? I can’t say for sure but luckily we have only a few weeks to wait before the truth will be revealed on August 7. Until then, you should probably keep your Type-C to 3.5 mm jack dongle nearby just in case.

Related phones

Galaxy Note10
  • Display 6.3 inches
    2280 x 1080 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP (Triple camera)
    10 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 855
    8GB RAM
  • Storage 256GB, not expandable
  • Battery 3500 mAh
  • OS Android 10
    Samsung One UI

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