Courtesy of Apple
By Philip Elmer-DeWitt
November 30, 2015

There’s a rumor afoot that the next iPhone may ship without the familiar circular audio port where you plug in the ear bugs. It’s just a rumor, clearly labeled as such by the Japanese-language blog that started it. MacOtakara’s source is described only as “reliable” and its headline ends in question mark:

From the next iPhone 7, the headphone jack is abolished?

But that was more than enough to get the speculative engines started. See here, here, here, here, and here.

By the time the story reached Australia’s iDititalTimes it was a done deal (“Apple to Remove 3.5mm Headphone Jack for the iPhone 7″).

Is Apple really prepared to render obsolete countless third-party headphones, hundreds of millions of its own white earbuds, and those clever magstrip credit-card readers (like Square’s) that slot into the port?

It wouldn’t be the first time Apple had abandoned a popular technological standard in the name of a higher purpose—like shaving another millimeter off the already anorexic iPhone 6S. Remember when the Mac lost the floppy disk? The CD-ROM? The DVD? Firewire? USB Type-A?

In the new 12-inch MacBook, Apple famously replaced five ports with a single USB Type-C connector. It did, however, keep the 3.5-mm audio port.

Apple would be crazy to drop it on the iPhone, forcing customers to either switch to Bluetooth or use a new kind of jack.

But Apple is just crazy enough to do it.

Follow Philip Elmer-DeWitt on Twitter at @philiped. Read his Apple (AAPL) coverage at fortune.com/ped or subscribe via his RSS feed.

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