The iPhone is undoubtedly the most revolutionary mobile technology product in the last decade. It has totally changed the way we communicate with each other, how we take pictures, listen to music, and entertain ourselves during the morning commute.
10 years ago, the iPhone was slow and a little blobby – but the world loved it because it worked. It was the ultimate combination of a phone, an instant messaging device, a camera, an Internet browser, a video screen, and an iPod. This article goes over the evolution of the iPhone.
First released in 2007, the iPhone had a 3.5-inch screen and a whopping 2-megapixel camera. Storage options included 4GB and 8GB. It doesn’t seem impressive now, but for the time, the iPhone held a torch. It surprised the world thanks to its multi-touch interface, allowing users to play games, use tools, and access various apps. The design was blobby and not very impressive, but it had Gorilla Glass on the front which meant it could take a beating and keep going.
The next year, Steve Jobs released the iPhone 3G with marginal updates, but it was much, much cheaper. The big thing it brought was access to 3G mobile networks – hence, the name. From this moment on, it was all about incremental updates to make the best phone ever. In 2009, the iPhone 3GS was released which had a better camera, faster internals, more storage, upgraded iOS, and better battery life.
iPhone 4 & 4S
In 2010, the iPhone was redesigned entirely. It was the first time the FaceTime video chat was released along with a Retina screen that the world has come to love. The iPhone 4 was released at $199 with 16GB of storage and $299 with 32GB of storage. It had a rectangular shape with a glass screen up front, a metal frame hugging the phone, and a glass back.
A high-quality 3.5-inch screen, completely new processor and graphics chips, larger battery, and an even better camera sprang Apple forward ahead of the competition.
The following year, the iPhone 4S was released. While it had the same design and construction, time and effort were spent upgrading it from the inside. The iOS software was improved, user experience was made smoother, and new hardware and an entirely new camera shot amazing pictures. It was also the first time Apple’s personal voice assistant, Siri, was shared with the world.
The iPhone 4S was also to be the last iPhone imagined and created by Steve Jobs – as he passed away a day after the phone’s announcement.
iPhone 5, 5C & 5S
A year later in September 2015, Apple announced the iPhone 5. It was the first iPhone to get a bigger screen – from 3.5-inches to 4-inches. While it had the same design and shape, it was faster, slimmer, and lighter. The iPhone 5 was also the first phone to do away with the 30-pin connector and move toward the easy-to-use standard Lightning connector.
Going along with Apple’s mantra of “Think Different,” in 2013, the company announced the iPhone 5C and iPhone 5S. The 5S was an upgrade to the 5, but the 5C was a colourful and less expensive iPhone for younger users. The iPhone 5S got the handy Touch ID hardware upgrade, a new gold colour, better camera, and completely upgraded internals.
Thanks to the cheaper iPhone 5C, now everyone could get an iPhone and enjoy the ecosystem that Apple offers.
iPhone 6 & 6 Plus
If the world thought Apple couldn’t surprise the world anymore with the iPhone – the world was wrong. Apple once again released two phones in one year: the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. These phones were bigger, completely redesigned, and said goodbye to their rectangular angled shapes for a cleaner, slimmer, and rounder design at the edges.
The front had either a 4.7-inch or 5.5-inch Retina screen with high pixel density and amazing viewing angles (the 6 Plus got a full-HD screen). The world demanded a larger screen and Apple delivered. The frame and back were made of a gorgeous nice-to-touch aluminum body that wouldn’t shatter if it fell.
iPhone 6S & 6S Plus
The following year, the upgraded 6S and 6S Plus was announced. Very little changed from the previous models. The design, materials, and screen remained the same. But the camera and internal hardware changed completely. The iPhone 6S came with a 12-megapixel snapper that shot breathtaking photos and could record 4K video. The new technology released that year included 3D Touch, and it also came in a new colour: Rose Gold.
iPhone 7 & 7 Plus
Welcome to 2016 – the time when Apple removed the headphone jack. Apple is always revolutionizing its products and generally, everyone else follows. The iPhone 7 and 7 Plus kept the same design and screen quality, and besides internal hardware and software updates, the three biggest changes were:
- Removal of the headphone jack
- Water & dust proofing
- Dual camera setup
iPhone 8 & 8 Plus
Interestingly, in 2017, rather than expecting an iPhone 7S, Apple skipped it entirely and went right to the new iPhone 8. A new glass and aluminum enclosure was welcomed with the new phone, along with new Retina HD displays and wireless charging.
But that’s where the biggest changes end. Internal hardware & software upgrades, a new camera system that shoots better pictures, better battery life and new colour variations separate this phone from the rest. Read about the comparison between the iPhone 8 and the iPhone X in a short post on this blog.
The iPhone X was the game-changer of 2017. Announced as part of the iPhone’s 10-year anniversary, it knocked the socks off the competition. A bezel-free screen, Super Retina display, a huge screen, revamped camera system, and Face ID are just a few of the new features on this phone. It’s also the most expensive iPhone ever. You can read more about the iPhone X in this awesome review.
What will the future hold for the iPhone? Each year the world is surprised by what Apple comes up with – perhaps 2018 will release new phones and new technologies that we never expected. Read about our thoughts on expected 2018 Apple releases.