Opinion | No 3.5mm headphone jack for the Samsung Galaxy S20 phones
Over the past few days, more and more details of Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S20 phones have been revealed. For the first time since the phones' rumor mill started grinding, live images and even a hands-on video of the phone have surfaced. The biggest takeaway? The lack of a 3.5mm headphone jack.
It was always coming. As far back as 2018, rumors already claimed the Galaxy Note 10 would ditch the headphone jack. When the Galaxy Note 10 phones were finally unveiled, they lacked the jack—an absence that may not have been surprising, without being any less painful.
Fans of the Galaxy S series may have held on to a sliver of hope that the S20 phones could keep the headphone jack, but those hopes have now been dashed. Samsung has finally removed the headphone jack from its most popular premium phone line.
Our thoughts on the headphone jack are well-known, and going back to them would be akin to beating a dead horse. A proper waste of time. Samsung's wireless alternatives have to be sold, and that's all that matters to the company. It's a bit hard to blame them, either, when one considers how much money Apple has made from sales of its AirPods line.
Sadly, the removal of the headphone jack from the Galaxy S20 phones leaves audio purists in the lurch. At this point, there doesn't seem to be much in the way of options for those in need of a premium phone featuring the headphone jack. Google and Huawei ditched it two years ago, OnePlus forsook it over a year ago, likewise Xiaomi.
That leaves buyers with LG or Asus. Both companies still hold regard for the jack, with LG, in particular, offering a class-leading HiFi Quad-DAC. Asus makes excellent phones, no doubt, but remains a league below juggernauts like Samsung.
LG it is, then. The company, local rivals to Samsung, is generally considered to be a top tier OEM, although that reputation was marred by a few bad years with faulty hardware. There's also the issue of awful software support; though things could be taking a turn for the better after the LG G8 ThinQ received the Android 10 update in the US just weeks after the Galaxy S10 phones did.
Recent reports also claim that Sony could be bringing back the headphone jack on its next flagship. That would be welcome news, and would provide audiophiles with one more option.