Happy 10th Birthday, iPhone
June 29, 2017 – by Per Christensson
Ten years ago today, I bought my first iPhone. I waited in line for more than three hours to make sure I would get one the first day it was available. This wasn't an iPhone 3G, 5S, or 7. It was just "iPhone" — the original.
On June 29, 2007, I replaced my old Samsung flip phone with the Apple's smartphone and switched from T-Mobile to AT&T. I've never looked back.
Less than a week after buying the iPhone, I left for Europe. The iPhone wouldn't be available in Europe for several months, so you can imagine how excited people were when they saw it. Whether I was in France, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium, Sweden, or Denmark, the iPhone never failed to impress. The locals were awestruck by the iPhone's sleek design, built-in camera, and amazing touchscreen. The first time people saw "pinch to zoom," their jaws dropped.
People looked at me like I was from the future — because I was. The iPhone not only changed the mobile phone, it changed our way of life.
Ten years later, nearly all my friends have an iPhone. Those who don't have an Android device, which was inspired by the iPhone. Those who could see the future back in 2007 and who had some money to invest, probably made a pretty good return in Apple stock, which has increased more than 700% since the iPhone's launch. Of course, most people who invested in AAPL probably wish they would have invested more or not sold their shares so early.
Steve Jobs and his team at Apple set out to reinvent the phone — and they did. The phones we carry in our pockets are mini computers. The current iPhone 7 is several times faster than most desktop computers from 2007. We don't just take photos and play music with our iPhones, we check Facebook, post to Instagram, tweet updates, and snap our friends throughout the day. And we use millions of other apps.
Tablets, smartwatches, and other portable devices have also influenced the way we live over the past decade. But nothing has impacted our lives like the iPhone. Nothing has even come close.
As with any technology, the novelty of the iPhone has faded and I now take for granted the benefits it provides. I get frustrated when something takes too long to load or an app doesn't work the way I want it to. So today, on this 10-year anniversary of the iPhone, I pause to reflect and be grateful for the most significant invention of our time.
Today is bittersweet, since Steve Jobs is not around to see the impact the iPhone has had the past several years. But if he could see the millions of people with iPhones and all the ways we use them, I think he would be pleased. He did make a dent in the universe after all.