Editor’s take: I have owned several iPhones over the years and have many unused chargers and sets of EarPods in my junk drawer. So when Apple announced that it was no longer including these items with the iPhone, I was somewhat unfazed. However, what about the new users? Shipping a product that needs to be charged without a charger is very unorthodox, so I expected some backlash.
One of the more disappointing announcements that Apple revealed in its “Hi, Speed” keynote on Tuesday was that it would stop bundling chargers and wired headphones (EarPods) with new iPhone purchases. These are items that the company had included in the iPhone purchase price since inception.
Apple says that separately selling the accessories will eliminate tons of e-waste since only those who actually need a charger or EarPods will buy them. Many users still have several of the previously included accessories lying around. It also said that excluding them allows for a smaller iPhone package, enabling it to ship more at once, cutting down on carbon emissions related to transporting the products.
Of course, many users were not happy about not having these items included anymore. Many feel it was a greedy, penny-pinching move. Seemingly in response to the negative feedback, Apple has introduced lower pricing on these accessories.
A new set of EarPods previously cost $29. Apple is now listing them for $19. Likewise, its 20-watt power adapter is also $19, another $10 reduction from the previous 18-watt charger. Of course, this will do little to appease the users that wanted them for free.
For new iPhone customers, it equates to at least having to buy a charger, which is necessary for the phone’s operation. Earbuds are an arguably unnecessary item as the phone still works without them. Also, EarPods are not the best out there, and many users typically replace them with something better anyway.
In Apple’s defense, a price reduction is at least a gesture of goodwill that should be enough for most to forgive and forget. It’s not like the move was unexpected. We first reported that analysts were predicting the exclusion of the accessories back in June.
Of course, those who are upset with the move can always let Apple know by not buying their accessories. Amazon has third-party chargers like the Anker Nano for the same price or less, and as mentioned, various manufacturers have lighting earbuds that are better quality than Apple’s. Vote with your dollar.