iPhone anniversary marks new day for Apple

2015-01-09 11:07

Today is the anniversary of the debut of the iPhone’s introduction in 2007 and it marks a new market share push from Apple.

Former Apple executive Steve Jobs entertained the crowd at the MacWorld 2007 conference by introducing what he described as a revolutionary product.

At the time, BlackBerry dominated the smartphone market, along with rivals like the Moto Q, Palm Treo and Nokia E62.

But Jobs told an enthusiastic crowd during his presentation that there was a fundamental problem with smartphones.

“The problem with them ... is they all have these keyboards whether you need them or not. And they all have these control buttons that are fixed in plastic and are the same for every application,” Jobs said to rapturous applause.

The iPhone was the first consumer smartphone with a full touch display and Jobs dismissed the available software on competing smartphones.

He called software on competitor smartphones “baby software” and said that the iPhone software was at least five years ahead of them.

The introduction of the iPhone undoubtedly moved the market forward, and guaranteed Apple, and Steve Jobs by extension, almost cult-like status among fans.

Following the success of the iPhone, Apple also introduced the App Store in 2008, allowing users to purchase applications from the online platform.

Yesterday, Apple announced that the App Store set a record in 2014 with the store generating more than $10 billion (about R117 billion) in revenue for developers from the sale of games and apps.

The biggest single sales day in the history of the App Store was January 1 with sales of nearly $500 million.

“We’re so proud of the creativity and innovation developers bring to the apps they create for iOS users and that the developer community has now earned more than $25 billion,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice-president of Internet Software and Services.

Despite the success, Apple faces strong competition from devices running Google’s Android operating system, which was launched on September 23 2008.

Because Google makes the software available to manufacturers for free, Android has seen remarkable success, gaining market share of 85% as of 2014, according to data from Strategy Analytics.

In 2015, the mobile ecosystem is completely different to what Apple had in 2007.

Traditional computer rival Microsoft has joined the mobile race; Apple was late to the party as smartphone display sizes grew in size; rivals such as Samsung, Sony and LG delivered key technologies such as wearables.

But while Apple’s market share may suggest a lowering influence, the company has a history of making comebacks and sending shockwaves through the market.

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