Well, it works for me on the condition that the adaptor is provided in the box.
I know some people want more battery life and find a thinner phone anathema, but Apple's phones get about the same battery life from model to modelâ"10-14 hoursâ"while being thinner. So they tend not to regress significantly. I only need about that much, so a thinner phone is a bonus for me. For other people, external battery cases let you have the thicker phone you want and provide an enormous battery boost. I've heard John Siracusa call it the 'naked robotic core' theory. Sell a good, physically minimal device and allow people to augment it externally. That's the best of both worlds to me. I get the smaller phone that I want, and I can put a thin or nice case on it for a bit of protection or fashion. People with more robust needs will buy a different kind of case. Isn't that part of the choice everyone is begging for? I can't make a thick phone thinner, but I can slap attachments onto the phone all I want.
On the headphone front, I do about 3/4 of my listening through the Lightning port anyway. I have the phone docked at work and then run through a mixer, and I've got audio through the port in my car. A small adaptor on my headphones for when I'm walking around is a minimal burden. It's one fewer port that can be fouled or damaged.
Despite complaints, thinness does have actual benefits, tech-wise. Being forced to think about physical constraints and throw out old ideas about what's necessary on a device is important. Making parts smaller and more heat efficient is good. Packing it all into one thin device is amazing. And it's not just Appleâ"Apple drives parts manufacturers and competitors to come up with novel designs to compete. Sony has been making and refining amazing camera sensors for years now, driven in large part by the industry's need for better cameras in small formats.
Apple took a lot of crap for removing floppy drives and disc drives from their machines, too. The alternatives were better.
I don't think the headphone industry will switch to lightning (not even Beats; they'll obviously just have a choice between the two) but that's fine. I want my phone to effectively disappear. Something so thin and light and unobtrusive that I hardly notice it's there. We're most of the way there now, but I like how this is progressing.
Just PLEASE include the adaptor in the box, Apple. Seriously.