TECH

Read This Before You Buy Headphones

Apple might render them obsolete.

01/13/2016 05:36 pm ET
Monty Fresco via Getty Images
Aw yiss.

If you're in the market for a new set of headphones or earbuds and also think you might buy a new iPhone in the future, you should do one of two things: Buy wireless headphones or wait a few months.

For weeks it's been rumored that the next iPhone, which is expected this fall, will not contain a traditional headphone jack. Marc Gurman, a noted Apple reporter, said last week that sources confirmed the speculation. He also wrote that the new device could come with "completely wireless" earbuds that connect to the phone via Bluetooth.

Maybe the rumors are true, maybe they aren't. But you don't want to be the dumbo who spends a bushel of hard-earned cash on a nice pair of headphones that may not work with your new $600-plus smartphone

Apple has a history of killing old technology in the name of streamlined, modern design. The iMac G3 nixed floppy discs. Apple's newer computers don't have disc drives for CDs and DVDs. The freshest iPhones and iPads have Lightning connectors that make your old charging cables worthless.

As it happens, that Lightning connector could be your saving grace if you want to hold onto wired headphones: In theory, an adapter could fit into that Lightning port on the upcoming iPhone to let you use traditional headphones. And some newer headphones already have Lightning-friendly cords that bypass the headphone jack.

Still, better safe than sorry. If you want to invest in nice wireless headphones, we suggest following The Wirecutter's advice on which products are the best. 

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