In 2007, Steve Jobs stepped across the stage at Apple to give the most amazing and revolutionary Keynote speech of his life. He was there to present to the world a device that would create an entire industry by blending the user experience of three different products. A phone, an iPod, and the internet would now all be accessible through a single mobile creation: the iPhone.
It’s incredible to think an artifact that has become such a fixture in modern life, for both consumers and businesses, was introduced just a decade ago. The whole world has seemingly had to adjust and evolve, streamlining media for mobile communication and connectivity for the new mobile platform. Throughout its ten year history, Apple has continually strived to improve the iPhone, modernizing its design and improving speed, capability, UI and UX design. With each new iPhone model, Apple was able to create more functionality and open more doors for new industries to grow around the smartphone industry. As Steve Jobs once said, “We’re here to put a dent in the universe. Otherwise why else even be here?”
Today’s iPhone and the Future
As evidenced by the invention of the iPhone, Apple has never been satisfied to contend against competitors for share in established markets; rather, they continuously pursue creation of brand new industries, acting as the first-mover to lead the rest of the world into the future. However, the more recent iPhone models of the iPhone 6S, SE, and 7 have been largely undifferentiated, as opposed to their early iPhone model counterparts. Consumers are becoming frustrated and indifferent towards Apple due to the analogous nature of their products over the last several years. In other words, people are no longer lining up (at least in the same numbers) to purchase the newest iPhone model on release day, as features are known and basically the same model-to-model with less awe-inspiring incremental improvements to existing features, preventing a need to switch.
As a result, even despite the remarkable success of the iPhone, many shareholders of Apple are concerned that the brand’s culture of innovation is fading away. Steve Jobs’ death in 2011 has marred the company with an unusual period of stagnation, as the world waits for the groundbreaking new idea from Apple that will revolutionize the world. Are these concerns legitimate, or has the world simply become spoiled from Apple’s culture of successful progress and trailblazing innovation?
A New Tomorrow for Mobile
Apple’s remarkable innovation in the smartphone industry has left society questioning what can’t be done via mobile. Mobile commerce, advertising, apps, payments and banking, along with health tracking have all evolved to create a mobile and individualized consumer experience. With over 12 billion connected devices today, the “Internet of Things (IoT)” has taken over the focus of the technology sector, promising to change everything.
As recent as December 2016, Amazon Go launched a completely register-free convenience store, allowing shoppers to simply walk in, select their grocery items, and leave. This is made possible by computer vision and sensors that detect which items are taken out of the store, using scanning via an app in the shop, before finally being charged as customers leave. Through mobile tracking and holistic customization, automation such as this is likely in our future, all of which has been made possible by the onset and development of the iPhone, along with the greater smartphone industry and continues with growth in the internet of things.