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I'm jack's complete lack of surprise

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Christophe Clementi
Software Engineer, EASI

A few years ago, it was barely impossible to have a glimpse on what would be the newest feature of a new smartphone before it was announced. Communication was tightly controlled, creating the surprise, the wow-effect, on the D-Day. Not anymore, I'm afraid.

Evolution in technology has always been welcomed, and at the same time, yell at for sacrificing some features that we never thought would, at some point, be gone.

  • Remember floppy drives.

  • Remember CD drives.

  • Remember the audio jack.

So, is it a bad thing?

We could say no. We're living in a time where we crank up so much technology in so small form-factor devices, anything is good to diminish the size required by components. The jack port relies on a format that hasn't changed in more than 50 years. In computer's years, it's almost a bazillion years.

So, is it a good thing?

Once again, we could say no. There's countless equipment that carries a jack plug, and you don't want to use an adapter, or having to re-buy everything. The jack is a format that proved itself to be efficient, passive and broadly use across the globe. And, even if a lot of progress has been made in the wireless audio technologies (being Bluetooth, or other), any purist will tell you that the sound quality is not quite there yet, and that the connection stability could clearly be improved.

It's up to you to weight the pros and cons, and the way your device works with your ecosystem won't be the same than your neighbor's.

And for the ones who found the reference in the title, I will finish with this :

"It's only after we've lost everything that we're free to do anything."

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