A Smart Connector has been one of the features rumored for the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, but a new report from Japanese site Mac Otakara suggests Apple has decided not to include a Smart Connector on the upcoming devices.
The Smart Connector, first introduced with the iPad Pro, is a new type of port designed to transfer both data and power between the iPad Pro and accessories like the Smart Keyboard. It’s never been clear what purpose a Smart Connector would serve on an iPhone, but speculation ranged from battery cases to wireless charging.
The iPhone 7 had been rumored to be dropping the analog 3.5 mm headphone jack, in favour of wireless Bluetooth or Lightning cable headphones for audio output. However, a new iPhone 7 component leak posted on Weibo disagrees with previous reports, depicting a board that includes a 3.5mm jack (in the top right of the photo above).
The 3.5mm jack is large (relative to the thinness of the phone), dates back more than a hundred years and has been superseded in terms of signal quality by the modern digital solutions, so it is plausible that Apple would want to abandon it. However, the idea of removing the port has been controversial (with complaints about existing accessory compatibility). This Chinese leak indicates it is sticking around …