Why The OnePlus 5T Will Have A Headphone Jack

Image: OnePlus

In an age where the humble 3.5mm aux jack is fast disappearing from many of the most expensive and premium phones, OnePlus is taking a stand. The next phone that the company is teasing, the OnePlus 5T, will have a headphone jack -- at least for the time being.

In a post on OnePlus' forums, where the company often makes announcements to its faithful fans, CEO Pete Lau made a short statement -- backed up with numbers -- on why the company will stick with the good ol'-fashioned analog connector.

The reasons are simple: 70 per cent of OnePlus owners and fans told the company that sound quality was a priority for them, and 80 per cent of users still use that headphone jack. When you've got four out of five users actually actively using a feature on their current devices -- and you want those users to stay in your ecosystem and eventually upgrade to the next one -- it doesn't really make sense to delete it. Wired audio also offers better sound quality potential than wireless, even if most headphones can't achieve it.

OnePlus' Lau does make the point that the company considered using a second USB-C port for audio to replace the 3.5mm jack, but decided that the impact on user experience would be a net negative rather than positive: "this design decision was not worth taking away our users' freedom to use their favorite earphones and accessories."

He also signs off with a subtle jab at Apple, whose "courage" in removing the 3.5mm jack has been much maligned in recent years: "Don't get me wrong. Wireless audio technology has a lot of potential. And if you prefer wireless headphones, our flagships have excellent Bluetooth capability for this choice. But our goal from the beginning has been to bring better technology to the world. That's why we prioritize the user and make good technology accessible. Sometimes, industry trends go against our core beliefs.

"This is one of those times when we respectfully disagree on what it means to be courageous. That's why we're proud to announce that we're keeping the headphone jack for the OnePlus 5T – and confident that our product decisions for our upcoming device will offer the best flagship experience possible."

[OnePlus]

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Comments

    I didn't read the article but assume it's so you can plug a set of headphones in and hear audio? Am I correct?

      I don't know anyone that's exclaimed "Oh, I wish phones wouldn't have a headphone jack so I need to buy 'expensive' wireless buds that need to be keep charged to work."

        And it has been a long time I heard anyone say, "Gee, I wish my computer still had a floppy disk drive".

          In that case you're talking about an obsolete data drive, headphones are far from obsolete. It's more like saying who needs Ethernet when you have Wi-Fi? Plenty of us still prefer Ethernet when working at a desk and plenty still prefer to plug in a 3.5 then use wireless cans.

          It's more a case of saying "Gee, I wish I could listen to music right now, but I can't because my wireless headphones are out of charge again, and besides they sound terrible anyway."

    My next phone purchase will have a standard headphone jack in addition to the charging port.

    There's companies like Apple and Google who have removed it, but those phones so far I ruled out for me based on other reasons anyway.

    I usually like flagship Samsung phones as they're stunning and have all the features I look for so as long as the S9 keeps the headphone jack I will probably get that next year when my contract runs out.

    Remember all the people who would "never" buy a phone without a removable battery or a micro SD card?

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