Apple, vendors confirm iPod headphone-chip rumors

by admin March 17, 2009 at 7:18 pm

Apple’s third-generation iPod shuffle no longer includes the familiar control pad of previous models, instead providing a slim, three-button remote controller on the headphone cable. As we reported last week, this means the new iPod shuffle is not currently functional with any headphones but Apple’s own. While a number of vendors have announced plans for aftermarket headphones with a similar controller, none are yet available.

Over the weekend, Web sites iLounge and Boing Boing Gadgets both reported that Apple will be requiring any third-party headphones that wish to include this inline remote to include a special “authentication chip.” Remote-equipped headphones that do not contain this chip, including the headphones included with the iPhone and iPhone 3G, would not be able to control playback on Apple’s latest compatible devices. (Apple’s remote-equipped headphones and compatible third-party models also allow you to control the most-recent versions of the iPod touch, nano, and classic, as well as control media playback when used with Apple’s current MacBook and MacBook Pro.)

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