How to listen to music while charging your iPhone 7/Plus

Belkin’s new Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar adapter for iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus was developed closely with Apple. Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar plugs into the iPhone’s Lightning connector making it possible to use Lightning Audio headphones or the Apple Lightning to 3.5 mm Headphone Jack Adapter and charge your iPhone at the same time.

“We’re excited to offer the Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar to our customers, extending our family of RockStar multi-port products and creating an easy way for people to charge and listen on the go,” says Steve Malony, VP, GM Belkin, in a statement.

The Belkin Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar offers dual functionality for charging and listening. Whether you want to charge in the car, on the go, or at home, the Belkin adapter makes it possible to listen to Lightning Audio and power your iPhone, simultaneously.

The adapter is designed to work with the full ecosystem of Lightning Audio headphones and there’s no need to remove your phone case while using it.

Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar features:
• Dual functionality so you can listen to Lightning Audio and charge at the same time
• Compatible with Lightning Audio headphones* and Apple Lightning to 3.5 mm Headphone Jack Adapter
• Supports pass-through charging up to 12W for iPhone and iPad
• Supports up to 48 kHz, 24-bit audio output
• Works with the Apple iPhone 7 Smart Battery Case and battery packs for on the go charging
*Supports one Lightning Audio device and one charger only

The new Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar will be available October 10 for an MSRP of $39.95 on, and at Apple retail stores.

More info via Belkin here.

MacDailyNews Take: There you go, simultaneous listeners and chargers!


        1. I agree but…

          Why: Old devices have old batteries that die too quickly. (I like to own stuff until it drops dead or is seriously out-of-date). Bringing the battery pack on the road with me saves me from hunting around for electric outlets. I end up leaving my AC charger at home instead. I also don’t have to worry about scurrilous hacked USB charging ports anywhere. I bring my own.

          I will be getting an iPhone 7, have no fear, once the stampede has ended and the local shop has what I want on hand.

    1. To charge while outputting audio to an analog amplifier, not one but TWO adapters is now required do do something that you could do out of the box with any prior iPhone model. It does matter to some people, so don’t discount their valid concerns.

      ARS Technica offers an excellent discussion on the headphone jack removal and whether the added stuff like the taptic home button adds to the experience.

      Though affluent Apple early adopters won’t care about an extra $80 here and there for overpriced adapters, obviously a lot of customers do. They have every right to question Apple’s true motives, which historically has included instances of profiteering from a largely captive audience. Do you love paying $15 for the equivalent of a $1.50 Costco hot dog at your local sports stadium?

      If Apple had offered lightning headphones one or two years ago before ditching the old analog minijack, the aftermarket would be spooled up. But this connector change from Apple, like Lightning replacing the 30 pin connector, has been poorly communicated and not well thought out from a user perspective.

      1. I agree Apple really should have made the lightning headphones starting with the iPhone 6. And Only with the 7 remove the Jack altogether.

        No doubt the whiners would have mostly been gone by now. Still some around to bitch moan whine and complain… But considerably less.

  1. Personally.. Bluetooth, charge and play dealt with. I was over the loss of the 3.5mm Jack once I realized I already don’t use it as much as I thought cause I switched to BT years ago.
    Granted I will be using the adapter from time to time, but won’t be relying on it much. Nor will I be using the included EarPods much.

    Belkin/everyone else needs to make the dongle smaller really. I’m sure someone will at some point.

  2. I guess if your stupid enough to lay down several hundred $$ on a new iPhone 7, then you’d probably be fine spending another $40 to appease Apples latest mantra ‘one port to rule them all’

  3. Looks like a good design.
    Did they design it correctly by designing it so it doesn’t mater which port you plug you use to plug your headphone and charger into?
    To bad they couldn’t design it to also use two pairs of headphones (EarPods) at the same time.

  4. Just to be clear, this is just a lightning splitter. Meaning, if you want to use standard high end headphones, you would need two dongles: A $40 Belkin Lightning splitter *and* a $9 lightning to stereo-mini dongle. That’s a lot of dangling crap the droid users won’t have to tote around. Courage indeed.

  5. No matter how you spin it, the Lightning headphones is one of the worst decisions Apple has made. I consider Jony Ive a design genius, but this decision would embarrass Dieter Rams.

    The thing is, good design is about simplifying things. And the Lightning adapter does nothing but complicate them.

    Let’s start with gain for the user. Headphones need to do one and only one thing: Provide good sound. The better the sound, the better the headphones. The rest is irrelevant.

    Headphones today are basically speakers and wire. Easy to service, easy to fix. Changing the 3.5 jack to Lightning does nothing for the headphones. The change doesn’t make them sound better. If anything, Apple just created a barreer between my favorite headphones and my favorite phone.

    We got the argument “we provide an adaptor”. I see it for what it is: They did not remove the headphone jack: They put it outside, to be used as an adaptor. We all admire Steve Jobs. And Steve hated stylus for a reason: They were prone to get lost and added pieces to the device. That is EXACTLY what the adaptor is: A part that is easy to lose, and that add complexity.

    I’m not against removing things, when it makes sense. Removing the floppy disk or the serial/parallel port for USB made total sense. It made things simpler. They were becoming obsolete. Let me highllight it: There were BECOMING obsolete. They were not forced to obsolescence.

    There was no real reason for this move. This is not about courage. This is about profit. This is about forcing people to use Apple-licensed headphones only, instead of letting us choose the headphones we want.

    I’m really dissapointed at Apple right now. I’ve always rooted for them. but this is just bad.

    This reminds me of the 3rd generation iPod Shuffle, which were only controlled by Apple headphones. It was such a disaster, Apple had to go back to the old design.

  6. For the life of me, I still can’t understand what the fuss is all about about this stupid jack. I mean, does anyone listen to music through their headphones while charging their iPhones? That means your are tethered to an outlet. I usually charge at night when I am sleeping, or while driving, streaming music to my car speakers wirelessly. I still remember how free I felt the first time I wore bluetooth headphones; walking freely around, doing anything I wanted, unencumbered by those stupid wires. I mean, I did not even had to have my iPhone with me. Liberating is an understatement. Just die headphone jack. Just …Die!

    1. Yes, I always charge my iPhone whenever I get into the car. I also listen to podcast & music from my iPhone whenever I drive.
      Not against Apple’s decision, just answering your question.

    2. Empty Tank, you asked, “does anyone listen to music through their headphones while charging their iPhones?”

      If you haven’t gotten the answer to your question yet, then perhaps you need to meet more people in the real world.

      In my case, my iPhone 6 headphone jack is used to connect to different car Aux inputs, at least 3 different home stereos, and remotely with my Klipsch headphones. I often charge the iPhone in the car or whenever its playing to a stereo or when GPS is draining the battery.

      I don’t intend to replace cars and stereos to adapt to the iPhone 7. I will wait and see how the market shakes out, perhaps my next iPhone will be a 6S. I also don’t think that buying a $50 Lightning dock for each location, or carrying one wherever I go, is particularly user friendly. Do you?

  7. Ultimately, if the tech isn’t for you, don’t buy the latest iPhone. No one is forcing anyone to buy into this. My iPhone 6+ is working fine and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

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