One could sense a weird buzz coming from the Moscone Center in San Francisco in the early morning of January 9, 2007. The impending arrival of something exciting brought a palpable tension in the air, as the audience inside the complex was fixated onto Steve Jobs, who was hosting the most important event of the day - Apple's much-anticipated keynote.
"This is a day I’ve been looking forward to for two-and-a-half years," Jobs said at around 9:43 AM local time. As the excitement was about to reach its tipping point, Steve announced "three revolutionary products" - a widescreen iPod with touch controls, a revolutionary mobile phone, and a breakthrough Internet communicator. Each of these got its fair share of applauses and cheers but it was the phone that almost got a standing ovation. There was no time to lament that as the three revolutionary products began reappearing on the screen behind Jobs. The crowd quickly realized that something was amiss.
"An iPod. A Phone. An internet communicator,"
Steve repeated twice amidst bursts of cheers and laughter coming from the excited audience. Probably there were no three new Apple devices, probably it was just one.
"Are you getting it?"
, Steve asked. "These are not three separate devices. This is one device. And we're calling it... iPhone."
Moscone Center erupted.
Rumors about a revolutionary mobile phone developed by Apple in secrecy have been flying around for years and this had raised the expectations bar a bit higher for Apple. It was more than relieving to see that Apple not only met those expectations but also surprised just everyone with how advanced the iPhone was in comparison with its contemporary rivals.
The original iPhone hit the shelves months later, on June 29, 2007, and it was priced at $499 for the 4 GB model, whereas the 8 GB model cost $599. Being a first-gen product, the device suffered from a few flaws, but in the end of the day, it was universally lauded as an innovative, breakthrough device. Time magazine even named it Invention of the Year
Regarding who you ask, the iPhone is either an overpriced and underpowered phone or one of the most influential pieces of technology the world has seen so far. It essentially kickstarted the smartphone industry as we know it today. No matter where you stand, it's a fact that no other gadget of the same type will ever be as popular and well-known around the world as the iPhone.
"We're going to make some history together today", Steve had said at the beginning of the keynote.
He was not wrong.
It's been 10 years now and Apple has released a total of 15 different iPhones on the market. Here are all of them:
The Apple iPhone through the years