Philips has debuted some new headphones that give a glimpse into the future. The new Philips headphone lineup connect directly to the lightning port on iOS devices instead of connecting to a headphone jack. What’s the difference?
For one, headphones (or any other device, really) that connect directly to the lightning port can draw energy from that device. But there are a myriad of other reasons why the concept of connecting devices directly to a lightning port is exciting.
Headphones that connect to a lightning port are also headphones that can do a lot of different things like convert digital to analog, include heart rate monitoring information, wireless bluetooth capabilities, and additional health-related reports. Plus, accessories that draw power from an iOS device means that those items can also charge by drawing energy from the iOS device.
The two headphones models that Philips has recently announced both connect to a lightning port directly, though the two options are unique. The Philips Fidelio M2L has 24-bit audio capabilities (high resolution), a built-in amplifier, and a built-in DAC. The Philips Fidelio NC1L includes everything that the M2L model has plus a noise cancellation feature. These are the first headphones to connect directly to the iOS lightning port, but more are sure to pop up soon from other manufacturers.
Both sets of headphones should hit store shelves in April of 2015. The M2L set will retail for $300, and the NC1L will retail for $299. These are some high prices for headphones, but anyone searching for high-end headgear that does provide the latest technology when it comes to iOS devices will happily shell out for the new Philips creations. How does the sound stack up?
Those that have had a chance to test the new Philips headphones (and they aren’t many, since Phillips still has some adjusting to do before the products are released, indicate that the sound from the new headphones is good to very good. Whether or not these will be the headphones to rival high end types remains to be seen. Then again, at $300 a pair, the new Philips creations are far from being on the lower end of the spectrum either.
The Future of Headphones
If you don’t have an iOS device, headphones that connect to a lightning port probably don’t have any appeal to you, which is understandable. But, the real anticipation here is of things to come. A while ago when Apple created the lightning port, company reps told press that the new port (at the time) would be leading to bigger and better things. Headphones like the ones that Philips has created are just the tip of the iceberg.
I’m predicting that you will soon see all kinds of health-related accessories for the iOS device that do plug directly into the lightning port, and also combine things like audio. This is the real future of iOS headphones, and it might be something that other companies aside from Apple pick up on. Are lightning ports in the future of every device?