iPhone 7: Petition against dropping headphone jack because it will ‘screw the planet’ gets hundreds of thousands of signatures

The company hasn’t yet announced that it will drop the traditional connector — and will probably provide a converter if it does — but customers are already angry

Andrew Griffin
Tuesday 12 January 2016 17:20

A petition against Apple’s supposed plan to drop the headphone jack from the next iPhone has been signed by nearly 250,000 people.

But Apple hasn’t even yet announced that it will drop the connector, and the idea is based off potentially false reports from the company’s supply chain that claim it will use the Lightning port that is used for charging instead. That hasn’t stopped widespread anger about the move, which the petition claims will “screw consumers and the planet”.

The petition claims that “only a massive international campaign can force Apple to change course now”. But it’s unlikely that even a concerted effort will stop Apple, which has a history of dropping technologies even if people continue to find them useful.

The petition on consumer site Sum of Us claims that as well as “forcing iPhone users” to spend money replacing their headphones, the change will lead to damage to the planet.

“Not only will this force iPhone users to dole out additional cash to replace their hi-fi headphones, it will singlehandedly create mountains of electronic waste — that likely won't get recycled,” the petition notes. “According to the United Nations, up to 90% of the world's electronic waste is illegally traded or dumped each year.

2015 - A year of Apple

“Tell Apple to respect its customers and our planet. Keep the standard headphone jack.”

Apple has made no comment on the rumours about its headphone jack. And if it is brought in then Apple will likely offer some convertor for old headphones, so that they can still be used.

New iPhones will also presumably come with headphones suitable for the new port, meaning that anyone using those is no more likely to throw out old ones.

Still, the petition hopes that the petition can change Apple’s course. It claims that Apple’s investment in renewable energy and other renewable technologies happened because of public pressure, and hopes that putting the same focus on the new — and still unconfirmed — change will stop it from happening.

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