With it all but being confirmed by Apple that the iPhone 7 will remove the headphone jack I decided to re-familiarise myself with bluetooth headphones and use them exclusively for a week - here is what I found.
What headphones did I use?
I used the LG TONE INFINIM that I reviewed last year.
Pairing was easy, simply turn them on and pair them using the bluetooth section within the iOS Settings app. Once paired I found them reliable I.e. I didn't have to repair them once the initial connection had been established. I simply turn them on/off when I need to use them and the iPhone picks them up fine.
- Didn't rip my ears off! - I use headphones mostly when I do household tasks such as washing up or using the vacuum and I've had a lot of incidents where the cable has gotten snagged onto something and pulled my headphones out of my ear canals
- Freedom of movement - at my standing desk I can walk around to stretch my legs or grab something without pulling my iPhone onto the floor, something I've lost count of how many times I've done
- No tangled cables
- For use when working out, as someone that tries to walk every day it's been nice being able to put my iPhone in a pocket somewhere without the cable sticking out of my clothes
- Remembering to charge them - mine lasted a few days and in my testing I didn't develop a habit of charging them up. I'm sure on longer testing this would become part of my charging routine along with my Apple Watch etc...
- Range - Range wasn't amazing on the pair I tested. If I am doing work in the garden I would put my iPhone somewhere safe and then do the work but I would find that as soon as I was a few foot away from my iPhone the quality would quickly deteriate and eventually drop out
- Quality - I still believe that whilst the quality is fine generally it wasn't as good as a connected pair. I experienced occasional 'crackle' and as soon as I went back to an older pair of connected headphones that quality was noticable (to me at least). For podcasts it will be fine but for me I'd rather stick to the traditional headphones
Could I live with them full time?
I've come to the conclusion that if Apple supplied an adaptor I could probably live with an iPhone 7 without a headphone socket. It's not something that I can justify them doing at this point until I've heard their reasoning for it but if there are compelling features such as that rumoured dual lens camera I am now confident that I could transition to a headphone jack-less iPhone existence going forward. The way I figure is that if I am out and about then bluetooth will be fine, when I want to enjoy some music I will connect via lightning or adaptor.