The iPhone Is 4 Years Old, It Seems Like Just Yesterday …

iPhone4thBirthday

Wow. Today is four years to the day since the launch of the original iPhone on June 29, 2007. Despite all its massive success it still doesn’t feel like it’s been that long to me, until I start thinking about all the ways the iPhone has changed the game in the smartphone market and, as part of the iOS platform, the entire mobile arena.

Remember what things were like in the smartphone world before the iPhone came along? I remember, leading up to and for a long time after the iPhone launch, hearing lots of naysayers talking about how the iPhone wouldn’t have much impact at all, or would be an outright failure. One of my favorite old arguments against it was that it was all about marketing hype, the product itself was no game changer.

Right, here’s how that worked out:

– Before the iPhone, there were no smartphones that used a multitouch interface – now virtually all of them do.

– Before the iPhone, there were no smartphones with the big touch screen design – now the vast majority of them have this design.

– Before the iPhone, the UI of most smartphones was a miserable, painful experience for all but the most geeky of users. Finding and buying good apps for a smartphone was an even worse, horrendous experience.

– Even before the iPhone was released, we started hearing about devices that were sure to be ‘iPhone Killers’. Remember all those over the first couple of years of the iPhone being in the market? Remember any of their names now? Me either.

– Since the first iPhone hit the streets, nearly everyone else in the smartphone arena has done just about nothing other than struggle to copy it. To copy the hardware design, the touch interface, and the App Store.

Not bad for a device that wasn’t going to make an impact and was all about marketing hype.

The image at the top of this post is a slice of a great iPhone infographic that Mashable put together. In amongst the many impressive iPhone numbers from its first four years, here are a few that caught my eye:

– 270,000 sold in the first 30 hours

– Apple accounted for nearly 9 out of 10 mobile app downloads in 2010

– As of early this month, there have been a staggering 14 billion App Store downloads

Amazing numbers. A truly game-changing device. I’ve owned all four iPhones, and love them for a variety of reasons. If I had to pick just one thing that has struck me the most about the iPhone I’d say that, after many years of being a huge fan of mobile devices (from back in PDA days), the iPhone is the first one that truly felt like a computer that fit in my pocket.

What’s your best iPhone-related memory, or your one favorite thing about the iPhone?



  • Michael Brennan

    And let’s see where the iPad is on it’s 4th Birthday :-)