The iPhone 7 and 7 Plus were announced on September 7 and were released to the public on September 16 of this year. And you happened to get your hands on the device day one. Congratulations. Okay, perhaps you didn’t get your hands on the device day one: Apple incurred a shortage on a handful of their latest flagship phones, including all of the iPhone 7 Plus models (unless you pre-ordered it, of course) and the “Jet Black” color option for the iPhone 7. Roughly 30 days have passed and you managed to scout out the last remaining iPhone 7 or 7 Plus in the desolate lands of Apple a la Mad Max. Good for you.
Unfortunately, as beautiful as your new phone is, there’s a teeny-tiny problem: The 3.5mm headphone jack has been replaced by a speaker grill, meaning no more connecting your old audio technology (including the expensive headphones you probably purchased to get the best sound quality). There is a remedy, though: Apple includes a lightning to 3.5mm headphone jack adapter, as well as a pair of lightning AirPods with the purchase of every new iPhone 7 or 7 Plus. And while this corrects your first problem, a new problem arises: How in the world do you charge your device and listen to music at the same time?
Only a handful of manufacturers were producing some kind of workaround during the initial launch of the newest iPhones, so options were rather limited. Now, however, with a whole month in the wake of the crashing iPhone releases—and to keep up with the “7” theme—here are 7 options to simultaneously charge and listen to your favorite songs on your sweet new handset.
2in1 Lightning to 3.5mm Headphone Jack Adapter From eBay
The cheapest option is this little dongle from eBay. Sold by syzbeautystore, this adapter allows for charge and audio pleasure at the same time, so you can binge all the Netflix you want without having to worry about your phone dying. At the time of this writing, it costs $7.98 (plus $2.59 shipping), and has a 99.4 percent positive feedback rating, with about 80 currently sold.
iTrip Clip Bluetooth Headphone Adapter From Griffin
Griffin is known for manufacturing quality cases and power banks, and they are back again with a clip that turns your wired headphones into Bluetooth headphones. Simply connect your headphones to the clip’s 3.5mm jack, pair the clip to your iPhone, and you’re set for approximately 6 hours of play and talk time. Featuring a rechargeable Li-ion battery, a set of control buttons for pausing, playing, and volume up and down, and a clip design that easily attaches to your shirt, the iTrip Clip costs $19.99, and has an impressive 5-star rating.
iPhone 7 Lightning to 3.5mm Power Audio Charge Headphone Jack Adapter Cable From Amazon
FStop Labs has an interesting option in the iPhone 7 Lightning to 3.5mm Power Audio Charge Headphone Jack Adapter Cable. (What a name.) This dongle connects to your iPhone via the lightning port, has a lightning port on the side for charging, and the 3.5mm jack at the end for audio connectivity. One thing to note, however, is that it does not feature microphone support, so even if your headphones have a microphone, this adapter will not let you answer calls. It costs $24.99 and comes with free shipping.
Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar From Belkin
You’ve seen Belkin on cases, cables, power banks, and the like in both Walmarts and Targets. The well-known company has produced their own dongle that uses lightning cables—for all of its ports. Of course, it connects to the lightning port on your iPhone, but you cannot use a 3.5mm headphone jack with this adapter unless you use the Lightning to 3.5mm Headphone Jack Adapter featured in the iPhone box, but who wants that many cables connected to their phone? This adapter will cost you $39.99.
iPhone Lightning Dock From Apple
Of course, Apple manufactures their own adapter as well. This dock has been redesigned specifically for the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus to support their design. You can connect the dock to a computer via USB or power outlet, and enjoy a cleaner look with your phone standing upright. While novel, you cannot use your device while it is docked, but you can connect a pair of 3.5mm headphones to the dock to listen to music and charge—or watch Netflix, but who watches Netflix with their phone standing upright? This dock costs $49.00, in typical Apple pricing.
iLDOCK and iLDOCK Plus From ildockgear
Perhaps the most riveting adapters are the iLDOCK and iLDOCK Plus by Los Angeles start-up, ildockgear. The iLDOCK allows you to charge and listen to your iPhone, while the iLDOCK Plus allows you to read SD, TF, and USB drives. The adapters are currently on Kickstarter, with $154,469 out of $5,000 at the time of this writing, and are estimated to be delivered to backers sometime in November or December of this year (depending on the pledge).
Bonus: Lightning to 3.5mm Headphone Jack Adapter From Apple
You lost the adapter Apple gave you for free with the purchase of your new iPhone 7 or 7 Plus? No matter, you can purchase it again from Apple. Although you cannot charge and listen to music at the same time with this adapter, it might be a good idea to keep a few extra around in case you lose it, like you lost your last one. This adapter costs $9.00, and it may be the cheapest thing Apple has sold, ever.
There you have it: A few different choices to charge your iPhone 7 or 7 Plus and continue to enjoy audio playback at the same time. A simple Google search yields a plethora of other options to choose from; if you’re willing to take a chance, you may find even cheaper options by browsing Google’s “Shopping” tab, but these seemed the most promising of the bunch. Feel free to peruse the other alternatives, and let me know what you find.