Back in the year 2016, we had no problems. Well, okay, that’s not true. We had some problems. But our headphones weren’t one of them. That’s because headphones featured a universal design that was based upon a simple 3.5 mm jack that had been around for over a century. Then Apple killed the standard audio jack in iPhones and introduced its $159 wireless Airpods.
Wireless earbuds seem great, of course, until one falls out of your ear and down a sewer grate. Single Airpod Syndrome is a very real consequence of the new, untethered world of audio. That’s why Apple actually offers single Airpod replacements. That’s also why one company called Tapper introduced a solution of its own: Airpod cords.
First spotted by Boingboing, the $60 strap wraps around your neck and connects to your Airpods via magnets. That means if one falls out of your ear, it’s anchored to your body—like a rope climber is anchored to a mountain, or, you know, a normal, wired pair of earbuds were once anchored to your phone. What more is there to say here? We’re talking about a $60 product that adds wires to a product designed to remove wires from your life. The most hilarious twist is that Tapper’s cord actually has 4/5 stars on Nordstrom right now! Even if half those reviews are ironic, and the other half are planted, that’s still pretty impressive for a few inches of cordage. And a pretty sad commentary on the state of headphones, three years after Apple destroyed a perfectly good universal standard.