A year ago today, on June 29th 2007, the iPhone hit stores for the first time. The device lacked 3G connectivity, its battery struggled to last a day, and its camera resolution was just two megapixels. It was no surprise that the expectations of the handset were pretty low, but now 10 years on we can see how the iPhone, as well as other smartphones that followed, has changed the world in a way that few gadgets have done before.
Here is just a few ways in which the iPhone has made its impact:
- GPS – Remember the days where if you weren’t sure where you were, you’d have to rely on a paper map or simply ask a stranger for directions? With the introduction of GPS, this is something that doesn’t even cross our minds to do anymore.
- Selfies – When the front facing camera made it to the iPhone 4 it was thought to be because of video calling, but the selfie has undoubtedly been a social phenomenon that sprung up accidentally, rather than due to a design decision.
- Battery life – As previously mentioned, not all developments of the smartphone have had positive results. Due to the array of sensors and processes on modern smartphones, the batteries are under constant strain. The days of the old Nokia where battery life would last 5 days are long gone.
- Killing the phone call – Early mobile phones were made primarily for calling. But with the ability to text, email and message via social media, a study in 2015 showed that a quarter of smartphone owners had not used the handset to make a call within a week.
- Autocorrect – The touchscreen killed the physical keyboard for good and bought in autocorrect, with the idea that this would save time writing out messages, we are instead presented with a number of autocorrect fails that have become part of our everyday lives.
- Pinch to zoom – One of the common problems with mobile phones before the iPhone was that their screens seemed too small to do anything on. The pinch zoom was introduced and has become a very widespread gesture used in various different places.
- Apps – Probably one of the biggest changes to be made to the mobile phone industry. Introduced in 2008, app is a word that barely existed a decade ago but is now an industry worth tens of billions of pounds. There are now over 2 million apps with still more being developed, and people spent about £23 billion on iOS apps last year.
- Death of the ipod – Before the smartphone, people used to carry around an mp3 player as well as a phone. Now with every iPhone sold is another iPod not needed.
We don’t know what the next iPhone will bring, but the expectations have risen a considerable amount since its introduction in 2007. With so much having changed in the past 10 years, it will be of great interest to everyone to see how the next 10 years pan out for Apple.