The first iPhone went on sale on June 29, 2007, and it has been an eventful journey for Apple since then.
- The device introduced the icon grid layout, a single home button and a multi-touch display. While it wasn’t targeted specifically at enterprises, it did drop the physical keyboard and stylus, either or both of which were present on most mobile devices for that segment then. And it offered “pinch-to-zoom”, a feature we take for granted these days.
iPhone 3G (2008)
- This device introduced the App Store, giving third-party developers a chance to build applications for Apple’s phone. This ultimately led to the popularity of the app-based ecosystem, apps for enterprises also started appearing soon. This phone also supported faster 3G data speeds, push email and GPS navigation, which is a given on any smartphone today.
iPhone 3GS (2009)
- While the first “S” model offered a bump up in hardware and offered users the option of copying and pasting text, there weren’t many new big features. But many corporate captains started using this device, which was soon imitated down the ladder, eventually giving rise to the practice of bring your own device (BYOD).
iPhone 4 (2010)
- This device was made of glass and stainless steel, and introduced Apple’s squarer look with rounded corners. The device was introduced as the world’s thinnest smartphone then and was the first from Apple’s stable to use the “Retina display”. And yes, it came with a front-facing camera for Facetime calls, a precursor to the world of selfies. The device ran iOS 4, which supported multi-tasking, another given these days.
- Introduced a day before Steve Jobs died, this device came with Siri, Apple’s voice assistant, which would start the trend of personal digital assistants later, but was ahead of its time. It also sported an 8-megapixel (MP) camera, which, along with its rivals, led to the eventual demise of the simple point-and-shoot camera.
- This device had a larger 4-inch display and an aluminum case, which made the device durable and light. It also introduced the reversible Lightning connector. With many businesses supporting the iPhone, the iPad (introduced in 2010) and handheld data, companies thought it prudent to make such data available in the field by adopting services such as Amazon Web Services.
- Apple introduced two phones for the first time; the colorful 5C — made of plastic — was cheaper and sported specs similar to the iPhone 5; the 5S introduced a new home button supporting Touch ID, Apple’s fingerprint recognition system. It also featured a 64-bit processor and shipped with iOS 7, a major overhaul of the operating system,
- Apple finally introduced a bigger iPhone — the 4.7-inch iPhone 6, and the even bigger 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus. Both had a curved design and supported NFC payments, had a faster processor, and improved cameras, which had by then become the phone’s standout feature. While the bigger screen gave rise to a flurry of photo-editing apps as well, the phones weren’t as sturdy as previous models and reportedly bent if kept in the back pocket.
- The big change for these two models was the pressure-sensitive 3D touch and “Live” photos, that is, short videos were captured every time one clicked photos. By this time, Microsoft had also tweaked its Office for iOS and offered a unified experience across devices.
- The first iPhone brought out mid-cycle, the successor to the form factor of the 5S sported speedier hardware. This was possibly aimed at consumers who weren’t ready to move to the bigger iPhones. And it came in a host of colors.
- Avoiding a major redesign, it brought in a dual-camera system for the Plus, got rid of the mechanical home button and the headphone jack. The phones were also made water resistant. The cameras on the Plus have got positive reviews and it is the one to beat among smartphones.
- With the launch of iPhone X, Apple will mark its 10th anniversary edition of the smartphone, while iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus will be seen as upgrades to the iPhone 7 series.