Belkin announces simultaneous Lightning headphone and charging adapter for iPhone 7

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  • Reply 81 of 92
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,454member
    Marvin said:
    mac_128 said:
    the sad part is that it didn't need to be this complicated, certainly not for the average user, as I pointed out above -- since Apple is already building simple pass-through ports they could have just added to the end of the Lightning cable in the box.
    They could have added power to the audio adaptor but then everybody gets a bulkier adaptor to satisfy the few who need charging plus audio at the same time. iPhones last 50 hours while playing audio and for normal usage last over 10 hours. It will be frustrating for people in a situation where they want to charge and listen and haven't prepared for it but I don't think it's going to happen all that often. I expect that iPhone 7 owners likely to be in this situation will look into wireless headphone options or appropriate adapters if they haven't already.
    We don't know everything about this adapter yet, but it seems as though it can't be used as a simple headphone splitter so that two people can share the same audio (nor does there appear to be a BT option for this either).
    The idea of two people listening to the same audio sounds like it could be something that people do but I can't recall ever seeing anyone doing it. Everybody has their own phone so they can listen to the same track separately. People in groups tend to just play the audio out loud on the speaker because otherwise both of them have to bring their headphones to the same place. This is another area where wireless headphones would be a better solution.
    The Lightning headphones also can't be used with a Mac, as there are no adapters for it, so for many, it will be more convenient to use an old pair of headphones with the "free" adapter, than to carry around two different sets of headphones. Plus it gives the customer a chance to think about the future of the headphones they're going to use with the iPhone 7, instead of a way to plug in their old headphones and keep going -- talk about continuing to support a "comfort zone". Then there's the "magical" AirPods that won't even be available until LATE October -- what kind of sense does that make?
    They sell wireless Beats headphones just now:

    http://www.beatsbydre.com/headphones/

    I think they'd rather sell people Beats headphones than AirPods and I think people would rather buy Beats headphones.


    I know any criticism of Apple around here is met with derision, but the removal of the headphone jack as been mishandled. There's far more controversy than there needs to be, and Phil's tone-deaf response only exacerbates the problem.

    I'm not seeing the controversy. There's the occasional article online talking about it but most of the articles say it's not such a big deal. It's mainly a non-issue because of the bundled plug. I think it would have been worse if they hadn't bundled the plug because people would be posting all over social media saying the can't listen to music. It's true that bundling the plug gives people a way to hold onto old headphones but it sends a clear signal that this is an old way of working and they should explore better alternatives. I have a feeling that wireless headphone manufacturers are going to be very grateful to Apple over Christmas.

    I don't really want to start debating anecdotal use case with you. Suffice it to say, Apple has removed functionality that they have not replaced, and compounded the problem by not providing a way to adapt the provided Lightning headphones for use on anything else.

    I would never suggest putting a power port in the audio adapter. It belongs in the Lightning charging cable, as a pass through. Apple is already providing this exact functionality in the Battery Case, as I demonstrated above --  but for convenience here it is again: simply extract the Lightning passthrough port and attach a cable. It's a perfect solution, and perhaps we'll see it in the future.



    You also say the Beats earphones with the W1 chip are available now. However, they are not. All Beats earphone models with the W1 chip indicate they are not currently available, both the $199 & $149 models, with no availability date on the website. The $300 headphones with the W1 chip are available though, but not the one's you've pictured. Who knows maybe most people buy $300 headphones. 

    The rest is your opinion vs. mine. There's plenty of controversy all over the web and social media. And I don't know how anyone could say they couldn't listen to their music if they didn't include the adapter in the box, as long as the Lightning headphones are included. So that's a non-starter for me. But, I'm not looking to debate our differing perceptions.
    edited September 2016
  • Reply 82 of 92
    SoliSoli Posts: 10,032member
    mac_128, please stop reposting your ridiculous image. There is nothing perfect or reasonable about a 3.5mm headphone jack that intersects with a Lighting port at a right angle. As someone who loves the beauty of good engineering, it's cringeworthy.
  • Reply 83 of 92
    Soli said:
    mac_128 said:

    We don't know everything about this adapter yet, but it seems as though it can't be used as a simple headphone splitter so that two people can share the same audio (nor does there appear to be a BT option for this either).
    I'm trying to understand this comment. What is your rationale behind your assertion? Is one port on Belkin's Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar adapter only for audio, which means that for some reason you couldn't have an adapter that had 2x Lighting headphones, or 1x Lighting headphones + 1x analog adapter and headphones plugged into either port? I don't see a single piece of evidence that would support, what I can only imagine as, an artificial limitation.


    Why couldn't you have more than 2 headphones, just as you can branch off with analog splitters?

    Belkin's web site says the adapter will support one power connection and one audio connection, but not two audio connections. It doesn't say why.


  • Reply 84 of 92
    SoliSoli Posts: 10,032member
    Soli said:
    mac_128 said:

    We don't know everything about this adapter yet, but it seems as though it can't be used as a simple headphone splitter so that two people can share the same audio (nor does there appear to be a BT option for this either).
    I'm trying to understand this comment. What is your rationale behind your assertion? Is one port on Belkin's Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar adapter only for audio, which means that for some reason you couldn't have an adapter that had 2x Lighting headphones, or 1x Lighting headphones + 1x analog adapter and headphones plugged into either port? I don't see a single piece of evidence that would support, what I can only imagine as, an artificial limitation.


    Why couldn't you have more than 2 headphones, just as you can branch off with analog splitters?

    Belkin's web site says the adapter will support one power connection and one audio connection, but not two audio connections. It doesn't say why.
    There wording is bit too ambiguous for my tastes.
    † Supports one Lightning Audio device and one charger only
     I can understand that they only allow power-pass-through on one port, but if we're talking about digital audio-out, it seems that they adapter is simply not intelligent enough. Regardless, you can still use audio splitters being the DAC, like the few people have done that have needed them.


  • Reply 85 of 92
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,454member
    Marvin said:
    mac_128 said:
    the sad part is that it didn't need to be this complicated, certainly not for the average user, as I pointed out above -- since Apple is already building simple pass-through ports they could have just added to the end of the Lightning cable in the box.
    They could have added power to the audio adaptor but then everybody gets a bulkier adaptor to satisfy the few who need charging plus audio at the same time. iPhones last 50 hours while playing audio and for normal usage last over 10 hours. It will be frustrating for people in a situation where they want to charge and listen and haven't prepared for it but I don't think it's going to happen all that often. I expect that iPhone 7 owners likely to be in this situation will look into wireless headphone options or appropriate adapters if they haven't already.
    We don't know everything about this adapter yet, but it seems as though it can't be used as a simple headphone splitter so that two people can share the same audio (nor does there appear to be a BT option for this either).
    The idea of two people listening to the same audio sounds like it could be something that people do but I can't recall ever seeing anyone doing it. Everybody has their own phone so they can listen to the same track separately. People in groups tend to just play the audio out loud on the speaker because otherwise both of them have to bring their headphones to the same place. This is another area where wireless headphones would be a better solution.
    Jut thinking about this more ... many high end headphones use right angle connectors, for low profile connections with mobile gear and strain relief on both the connector and cable (like the Beats cable pictured below). So maybe, using a Apple's battery case passthrough concept, it might make some sense to put the port on the headphone cable, though it won't be as clean as putting it on the power cable, since there will be an open hole on the connector whenever it's in use, and not just when the phone's being charged. That's another reason to keep it on the charging cable. 



    So maybe as a model, a double ended low-profile right angle 3.5mm adapter instead, intended for sharing a single audio source? Certainly the right angle adapter will be just useful for Lightning headphones to keep them snug to the bottom of the iPhone, rather than sticking out where it can be accidentally leveraged to a greater degree, just as it prevents on high end headphones. Such adapters exist for micro and mini USB, but so far there's been no need for Lightning.

    There are already Right angle Lightning connectors, so it would just be a matter of building a lower profile adapter that does the same thing that the Belkin one does. 


    But, while that might make it more convenient to use, I'm not sure it would cost any less. Nor would Apple likely include it in the box, and it would still be an extra adapter to carry around. So I guess I'm back to the Lightning pass through. That makes the most sense of any option. Hopefully somebody will make a Lightning cable that includes this option and charges less than the Belkin adapter, because at this point it's less about buying another adapter, as it is carrying yet another adapter around.

    edited September 2016
  • Reply 86 of 92
    SoliSoli Posts: 10,032member
  • Reply 87 of 92
    ZooMigo said:
    Fantastic! We now have the worlds fastest, thinnest, most beautiful phone and we need a giant ugly block to make it ALMOST as functional as the last generation. Do not want, not buying. 
    Thanks, person who has never posted here before!
    tallest skil
  • Reply 88 of 92
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,615moderator
    mac_128 said:
    I don't really want to start debating anecdotal use case with you. Suffice it to say, Apple has removed functionality that they have not replaced, and compounded the problem by not providing a way to adapt the provided Lightning headphones for use on anything else.
    It's important to consider whether or not anecdotal use cases are representative of a large enough segment of buyers. When Apple removed the optical drives from laptops, people said the same thing that they removed functionality but it has turned out that the people who used the optical drives weren't representative of many users. Loads of people listen to music but the anecdotal cases are people who listen and charge and multiple people listening wired to the same device. If that amounts to enough people, 3rd party manufacturers will come up with a solution.
    I would never suggest putting a power port in the audio adapter. It belongs in the Lightning charging cable, as a pass through. Apple is already providing this exact functionality in the Battery Case, as I demonstrated above --  but for convenience here it is again: simply extract the Lightning passthrough port and attach a cable. It's a perfect solution, and perhaps we'll see it in the future.
    They could put a Lightning port on the chargers. I think it would be good if they put on two USB ports so that people can charge two devices from one charger.
    You also say the Beats earphones with the W1 chip are available now. However, they are not. All Beats earphone models with the W1 chip indicate they are not currently available, both the $199 & $149 models, with no availability date on the website. The $300 headphones with the W1 chip are available though, but not the one's you've pictured. Who knows maybe most people buy $300 headphones. 
    The pictured headphones are Powerbeats 2 wireless. The Beats site redirects to Powerbeats 3 but v2 is available just now:

    https://www.amazon.com/Beats-Powerbeats-Wireless-Headphone-Black/dp/B01A6TV0F8/

    Apple not having the new ones until October doesn't leave people without wireless options. 
    There's plenty of controversy all over the web and social media.

    Where? Are there viral posts or something? As you pointed out, they include Lightning headphones and a 3.5mm adaptor and there are lots of wireless options. What's the controversy about?

  • Reply 89 of 92
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,454member
    Marvin said:
    mac_128 said:
    I don't really want to start debating anecdotal use case with you. Suffice it to say, Apple has removed functionality that they have not replaced, and compounded the problem by not providing a way to adapt the provided Lightning headphones for use on anything else.
    It's important to consider whether or not anecdotal use cases are representative of a large enough segment of buyers. When Apple removed the optical drives from laptops, people said the same thing that they removed functionality but it has turned out that the people who used the optical drives weren't representative of many users. Loads of people listen to music but the anecdotal cases are people who listen and charge and multiple people listening wired to the same device. If that amounts to enough people, 3rd party manufacturers will come up with a solution.
    I would never suggest putting a power port in the audio adapter. It belongs in the Lightning charging cable, as a pass through. Apple is already providing this exact functionality in the Battery Case, as I demonstrated above --  but for convenience here it is again: simply extract the Lightning passthrough port and attach a cable. It's a perfect solution, and perhaps we'll see it in the future.
    They could put a Lightning port on the chargers. I think it would be good if they put on two USB ports so that people can charge two devices from one charger.
    You also say the Beats earphones with the W1 chip are available now. However, they are not. All Beats earphone models with the W1 chip indicate they are not currently available, both the $199 & $149 models, with no availability date on the website. The $300 headphones with the W1 chip are available though, but not the one's you've pictured. Who knows maybe most people buy $300 headphones. 
    The pictured headphones are Powerbeats 2 wireless. The Beats site redirects to Powerbeats 3 but v2 is available just now:

    https://www.amazon.com/Beats-Powerbeats-Wireless-Headphone-Black/dp/B01A6TV0F8/

    Apple not having the new ones until October doesn't leave people without wireless options. 
    There's plenty of controversy all over the web and social media.

    Where? Are there viral posts or something? As you pointed out, they include Lightning headphones and a 3.5mm adaptor and there are lots of wireless options. What's the controversy about?

    Sorry, how was the functionality of the optical drive not replicated by what replaced it? People complained about the removal of the optical drive because they couldn't play a CD or DVD if they wanted to. But the practical functionality of playing a digital music file was not removed. So it was not a valid complaint.

    I'm definitely not arguing that anecdotal evidence is valid by itself -- but here's the evidence that it's more than just a niche market -- Apple went out of its way to "work closely" with Belkin, before the iPhone 7 was announced, to ensure a solution for a recognized problem was available from day one. How would Belkin know it was even necessary if not for Apple? I'm still not certain the Belkin doesn't allow for simultaneous sharing of audio, perhaps it will with just a firmware update. But you're letting your anecdotal use cases cloud your understanding of the issue. It's not just multiple people sharing the same audio, but also sending audio to two different locations at once. There are many other use cases, besides sharing, including recording musicians, and to DJs (If you google headphone splitter you will find a vast market for it). And I'm not even debating that this shouldn't be accomplished by an adapter, since that's how it's handled now. But the fact Apple doesn't seem to address it, much less with BT technology which is the cornerstone of their justification, is frustrating. 

    As for BT, you are correct, not having products with the W1 chip until October doesn't leave people without BT options. But why on earth would anyone buy an inferior non W1 BT product when they will be out in a month? That's the whole key to Apple dropping the headphone jack, giving customers an alternative that's just as good, and easy to use. Instead, Apple includes a 3.5mm adapter free in the box encouraging them to continue using whatever they were before. And for everyone who was already turned off by current BT, they are faced with more of the same. Maybe they will check out W1 BT products in the future, or maybe they'll plug in the adapter and forget about it.  

    The adapter itself is controversial. And it's made worse because the Lightning headphones, which are part of the future of Apple's audio plans, can't be used on anything but some recent iOS devices, further encouraging anyone who needs to use their headphones with anything else, like their MacBook, to skip Lightning and just plug in the adapter. So for any customer who is not already using BT headphones and devices, or who only uses headphones with their iPhone and nothing else, their lives have just been needlessly inconvenienced, until at least the end of October, when they may have some acceptable options. By then the boat may have sailed. And that's a problem worth debating in my book, whether it affects you directly, or your sphere of anecdotal observations or not.
    edited September 2016
  • Reply 90 of 92
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,615moderator
    mac_128 said:
    It's not just multiple people sharing the same audio, but also sending audio to two different locations at once. There are many other use cases, besides sharing, including recording musicians, and to DJs (If you google headphone splitter you will find a vast market for it). And I'm not even debating that this shouldn't be accomplished by an adapter, since that's how it's handled now. But the fact Apple doesn't seem to address it, much less with BT technology which is the cornerstone of their justification, is frustrating. 
    Audio splitting can be handled the same way it is now, you'd just take the Lightning to 3.5mm and put a 3.5mm splitter on it:

    https://www.amazon.com/Belkin-Speaker-and-Headphone-Splitter/dp/B000067RC4

    There are audio products like the Chord Mojo for musicians.
    why on earth would anyone buy an inferior non W1 BT product when they will be out in a month?
    The older ones are a bit cheaper but it is only a month until the new ones so some people will wait on those, a lot of people won't even have their phones until November.
    Apple includes a 3.5mm adapter free in the box encouraging them to continue using whatever they were before.
    You seem to be suggesting that it would have been better for Apple to have left out the 3.5mm adaptor and included a dual Lightning option. This is a transition period. I don't think the adaptor encourages people to keep using what they have, it just allows them to. Far more people would have been affected by not having 3.5mm support than dual Lightning given the amount of 3.5mm headphones and sound systems vs Lightning.
    the Lightning headphones, which are part of the future of Apple's audio plans, can't be used on anything but some recent iOS devices, further encouraging anyone who needs to use their headphones with anything else, like their MacBook, to skip Lightning and just plug in the adapter.

    Headphone manufacturers that make Lightning products should design their products to be compatible with other connectors. The headphones would ideally be detachable on the headphone end and you'd use USB C or 3.5mm on computers and Lightning on the iPhone/iPad. There could be a small plug that goes from Lightning to USB or Apple can include Lightning ports on the new Macs. The push Apple is making is towards wireless solutions, not Lightning products, Lightning solutions can just be bundled because of the lower manufacturing cost:

    http://www.apple.com/shop/product/MMTN2AM/A/earpods-with-lightning-connector ($29)

    http://www.apple.com/shop/product/MMEF2AM/A/airpods ($159)

  • Reply 91 of 92
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,454member
    Marvin said:
    mac_128 said:
    It's not just multiple people sharing the same audio, but also sending audio to two different locations at once. There are many other use cases, besides sharing, including recording musicians, and to DJs (If you google headphone splitter you will find a vast market for it). And I'm not even debating that this shouldn't be accomplished by an adapter, since that's how it's handled now. But the fact Apple doesn't seem to address it, much less with BT technology which is the cornerstone of their justification, is frustrating. 
    Audio splitting can be handled the same way it is now, you'd just take the Lightning to 3.5mm and put a 3.5mm splitter on it:

    https://www.amazon.com/Belkin-Speaker-and-Headphone-Splitter/dp/B000067RC4

    There are audio products like the Chord Mojo for musicians.
    why on earth would anyone buy an inferior non W1 BT product when they will be out in a month?
    The older ones are a bit cheaper but it is only a month until the new ones so some people will wait on those, a lot of people won't even have their phones until November.
    Apple includes a 3.5mm adapter free in the box encouraging them to continue using whatever they were before.
    You seem to be suggesting that it would have been better for Apple to have left out the 3.5mm adaptor and included a dual Lightning option. This is a transition period. I don't think the adaptor encourages people to keep using what they have, it just allows them to. Far more people would have been affected by not having 3.5mm support than dual Lightning given the amount of 3.5mm headphones and sound systems vs Lightning.
    the Lightning headphones, which are part of the future of Apple's audio plans, can't be used on anything but some recent iOS devices, further encouraging anyone who needs to use their headphones with anything else, like their MacBook, to skip Lightning and just plug in the adapter.

    Headphone manufacturers that make Lightning products should design their products to be compatible with other connectors. The headphones would ideally be detachable on the headphone end and you'd use USB C or 3.5mm on computers and Lightning on the iPhone/iPad. There could be a small plug that goes from Lightning to USB or Apple can include Lightning ports on the new Macs. The push Apple is making is towards wireless solutions, not Lightning products, Lightning solutions can just be bundled because of the lower manufacturing cost:

    http://www.apple.com/shop/product/MMTN2AM/A/earpods-with-lightning-connector ($29)

    http://www.apple.com/shop/product/MMEF2AM/A/airpods ($159)

    How does any solution that involves 3.5mm jack move us forward? Seems counter to Apple's motives. I'm looking for native Lightning and BT solutions that replace the functionality available through the headphone jack, which so far is lacking, whether someone needs it or not.

    I absolutely believe it was a mistake for Apple to include an adapter, that only costs $9, in the box that encourages the continued use of 3.5mm headphones. If Apple was charging $40 for the adapter it would be a different story, but they're charging $9. And they're giving away a free pair of $29 Lightning headphones in the process. So anybody who opens up the box immediately has a way to use a set of headphones, if not their own headphones immediately, until they can pick up the headphone adapter of their choice. And it's clear that not only is the first on free, $9 is a subsidized price, sacrificing Apple's usual margins, which takes away the incentive for all but the lowest quality adapter makers, or highest quality adapter makers to jump into the marketplace (we'll know soon enough what quality third parties are competing with).

    I agree that any manufacturer would be foolish not to make platform agnostic headphones, at least the good quality ones. Cheap ones could have fixed functionality to save cost. And Customers would likewise be foolish to buy an expensive set of headphones without a detachable cable. The problem here is, Apple is including wired Lightning headphones in the box, as well as making it easy for a customer to keep using their old wired headphones, while not widely offering the wireless technology intended to replace the headphone for over a month (assuming there are no delays). In the meantime, the most convenient way to use headphones with the iPhone 7 out of the box is the same method they've been using for years, only now with more dongles. 

  • Reply 92 of 92
    I bought this adapter (https://goo.gl/ivOC1Kfor $35 because I wanted to use my beats headphones while I charge my phone and I have be very happy with the audio quality. I would like to buy the new AirPods for driving, but I guess they are never coming out! lol
    edited November 2016
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