OnePlus confirms ditching 3.5 mm headphone jack on 6T in favor of “improved battery life”

The OnePlus 6T — a mid-cycle refresh to the OnePlus 6 launched in May this year — is expected to launch next month on October 17. And, as we inch closer to this expected launch of 6T, we keep hearing more about it every other day. Earlier this week, OnePlus confirmed the presence of in-display fingerprint scanner on OnePlus 6T. And now, OnePlus has confirmed another bit about the OnePlus 6T that’s definitely going to miff a lot many loyal fans of OnePlus. Its the removal of 3.5 mm headphone jack from OnePlus 6T.

Alleged leaked render of OnePlus 6T

While talking to TechRadar, OnePlus Co-Founder Carl Pei confirmed that the company has decided to remove the 3.5 mm headphone jack from its “next OnePlus handset”. Well yes, Pei didn’t explicitly mention the 6T, but there’s little reason for us to not believe that he wasn’t referring to 6T by confirming the removal of headphone jack from “next OnePlus handset”.

So why remove the headphone jack from OnePlus 6T? Well, Pei said that the rationale behind removing the headphone jack from the OnePlus 6T is making some room inside the phone so that they could “put more new technology” into it. Pei didn’t tell what new technology is this going to be, but we already know what it’s gonna be: the in-display fingerprint scanner.

Another benefit of removing the headphone jack, Pei said, is improved battery life. By removing the headphone jack from the 6T, OnePlus will get extra space to cram in a bit larger battery, which should ultimately result in better battery life. We will have to wait till the phone comes out to see whether removing the headphone jack for improved battery life actually works or not, but Pei says that the difference would be “substantial enough for users to realize”.

That said, in a bid to do some damage control, Pei also confirmed that OnePlus 6T will come bundled along with a USB Type-C to 3.5 mm headphone jack adapter that would allow users to continue using their old earphones with the 6T.

Having said that, improved battery life and in-display fingerprint scanner are not the only reasons for removal of headphone jack from the 6T. Pei says that the company has taken this decision because they believe “now is the right time” to ditch the headphone jack as 59% of OnePlus’ community owned wireless headphones before the launch of OnePlus Bullets Wireless, and that number is expected to have gone north after the launch of OnePlus Bullets Wireless.

When we started OnePlus, we set out to make the best possible smartphone, but making a great phone doesn’t mean putting every component available into the device. You’ve got to make decisions that optimize the user experience, and understand that at times things that provide user value can also add friction.” said Pei.

It [removing the headphone jack] was a very controversial decision. We’re not doing it for the sake of doing it and because everyone else is. We believe now is the right time, as it’ll benefit the majority of our users while keeping the downside low. We knew this was an option for a very long time, we were just waiting for the right time.” Pei further added.

It remains to be seen how OnePlus’ fan-base and customers actually react to the decision of removing the headphone jack after the OnePlus 6T is launched. We are still more than a month away from the expected launch of OnePlus 6T, so you can expect to hear a lot more about this phone in the coming days.

What’s your opinion on OnePlus removing the 3.5 mm headphone jack from its “next OnePlus handset” which in all its likelihood is the OnePlus 6T?