Apple’s iPhone Turns 8 Today

Steve Jobs: ‘iPhone Is Like Having Your Life in Your Pocket’

By Paul Riegler on 9 January 2015
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Eight years ago today, Apple unveiled the first ever iPhone.  At the launch event, Apple co-founder Steve Jobs told the audience: “Today, we’re introducing three revolutionary products… the first one is a wide-screen iPod with touch controls. The second is a revolutionary mobile phone.  And the third is a breakthrough Internet communications device.

“These are not three separate devices,” he told the audience at MacWorld, adding “This is one device and we are calling it iPhone.

Jobs promised to reinvent the phone, and he did.  He showed the audience an image of an iPod with a rotary telephone dial on it while holding the iPhone in his hand, and commented that smartphones “were not so smart and they are not so easy to use.”

Given how ubiquitous these devices have become in the subsequent eight years (Apple sold over 10 million iPhone 6 and 6 Plus devices in the first weekend they were on sale), it’s easy to forget how revolutionary the iPhone was on day one.  Before the iPhone, no one really swiped or used multi-touch gestures on a regular basis, nor chose from an app store with hundreds of thousands of possibilities.

More significantly, the iPhone marked the move from a phone being a phone to it becoming a portable computing device with its own ecosystem.

It wasn’t completely smooth sailing, however, for the device.  The first time Steve Jobs demoed it, it didn’t go very smoothly, with calls and the Internet connection dropping at random and the device suddenly shutting down.

The problems notwithstanding, Jobs was optimistic and very prescient: “iPhone is like having your life in your pocket.”

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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