After the original Pixel was marketed as being superior to last year’s iPhone because it retained a 3.5mm headphone socket, Google has given in to industry trends and ditched this traditional output for its follow-up smartphone.
The Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL were announced last week, bringing with them a host of impressive hardware features, including always-on OLED displays and a range of augmented reality capabilities. But the fact that headphone owners will need to buy an adapter to use their existing audio accessories with these new devices will please no one.
Google is also following Apple’s lead by creating its own Pixel branded earbuds which use Bluetooth to connect wirelessly to smartphones and other compatible devices. These earbuds are fairly expensive, with a £159 price tag in the UK, but they are also integrated with Google’s Assistant service, offering a host of notification capabilities and even real time translation of foreign tongues, which is a nice touch.
The death of 3.5mm headphones seems inevitable now that Apple has got the ball rolling and Google has followed suit, although for the time being it is only high end handsets that are shedding this port.
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