On January 9th, 2007, Steve Jobs stood on a stage and introduced the device that would come to define the biggest tech company in the world — the iPhone. Exactly ten years later, Apple is celebrating that announcement at Macworld 2007, remembering the “revolutionary product” that Steve Jobs promised, and the famous keynote in which he revealed its existence.
It was named the iPhone, but Jobs described Apple’s new device a three-in-one product: “a widescreen iPod with touch controls, a revolutionary mobile phone and a breakthrough internet communications device.” His keynote may be a decade old, and the iPhone has gone through multiple revisions since, but how he envisaged the device being used is still accurate today. As well as being a functional phone, he described a device that could play movies, podcasts, and TV shows, as well as transfer your browser bookmarks and sync your photos.
Apple’s original iPhone site, dredged from the internet by the Wayback Machine, echoes Jobs’ three-in-one description. At the time, the concept seemed overly ambitious — a full-fledged computer in your pocket — but time has shown Jobs’ vision to be entirely correct. If anything, the iPhone Jobs described in 2007 is closer to the iPhone 7 than the original model: a large-screened device that can easily stream music and movies through apps developed for iOS.
The device is still Apple’s most important, as current CEO Tim Cook noted in today’s memorial post. “iPhone is an essential part of our customers’ lives, and today more than ever it is redefining the way we communicate, entertain, work and live,” Cook said on Apple’s site. He also used the occasion to promise more from Apple in the future. “iPhone set the standard for mobile computing in its first decade and we are just getting started. The best is yet to come.”
That may be true, but many fans would argue Jobs’ iPhone keynote is still Apple’s high-water mark — the point where the company took control of the modern tech industry, and the presentation that cemented its CEO’s legendary status.