This post may contain affiliate links so we may receive compensation if you sign up for or purchase products linked to below. You can read our disclosure for more information.
On January 9, 2007, at the Macworld convention, the iPhone was announced by the legendary Steve Jobs. Since 2007, the iPhone has gone through many changes. The iPhone is the first Apple phone that is successful.
iPhone 1, the First Apple Phone
The iPhone was released on June 29th, 2007 by Apple. The original iPhone was a powerful multimedia and internet-enabled smartphone; it had no physical keypad attached to the interface and the touchscreen served the purpose of a virtual keypad. The internet enabled functions of the original iPhone included web browsing, email, visual voicemail, text messaging, and Wi-Fi connectivity. The original iPhone had a beautiful 3.5-inch screen, with about 160 pixels per inch, and a high-quality 2 MP rear camera.
Since the release of the original iPhone in 2007, Apple has designed and marketed several models of iPhone. Below is a quick summary of the following iPhone releases.
The iPhone 3G was released on July 11, 2008, this is the moment people started to care more about smartphones. The 3G came with the App Store as the major improvement with the iPhone series. Besides the 3G upgrade to the iPhone 3G, there weren’t many changes to this iPhone.
The beginning of the S series updates for the iPhones. On June 19, 2009, an upgraded version of the iPhone 3G was released, the iPhone 3GS. The camera of the iPhone 3GS was upgraded to 3 MP and the storage option was increased from 16 GB to 32 GB.
The year we met Siri, the iPhone’s digital assistant. The iPhone 4 was released on June 24, 2010. Although the storage remained 32GB, the memory got a massive upgrade from the initial 256 MB of the iPhone 3GS to 512 MB. Additionally, the rear camera was upgraded to 5 MP. The iPhone 4 was also the first model to have a front camera.
The iPhone 4S was released on October 14, 2011. The iPhone history showed a pattern of major changes with the S series updates and there were many internal changes to this model. The year Retina Display was born and the screen became crystal clear. Apple decided to increase the pixel count of the iPhone 4S to 326 pixels per inch. The storage was finally upgraded to 64 GB. The rear camera was also upgraded to 8 MP. The memory stayed the same, at 512 MB.
Finally, an iPhone with 1 GB of memory. The iPhone 5 was released on September 21, 2012. Aside from the memory upgrade to 1 GB, there were a few new things that were added here. Apple decided to bring LTE connectivity and lightning connectors to their iPhones. And for the first time ever, Apple decided to increase the size of the iPhone screen, to 4-inch.
For many years, the iPhone 5S was considered to be the perfect iPhone because of its speed and perfect size. The iPhone 5S didn’t include anything major changes. A few new features that were introduced included dual flash, slow-motion video, and Touch ID. The iPhone 5S was released on September 20, 2013.
The first Apple phone to be considered cute and affordable. The only interesting feature about this iPhone was its colorful plastic shell. The iPhone 5C was released on September 20, 2013.
iPhone 6 and 6 Plus
On September 19, 2014, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus was released. This year Apple decided to increase the size of the screen for both models. The iPhone 6 offered a 4.7-inch display and the iPhone 6 Plus offered a 5.5-inch display. Both of these phones had a faster processor, upgraded rear cameras, improved LTE/Wi-Fi connectivity, and support for NFC-based mobile payments. The iPhone 6 Plus had a bigger battery and a better rear camera, thanks to optical image stabilization.
iPhone 6S and 6S Plus
Finally, front cameras with 5 MP! There were many nice changes with this S series update. The iPhone 6S and 6S Plus storage were increased to 128 GB, the rear camera was bumped up to 12 MP, and the memory was increased to 2 GB. Similar to the previous model, the 6S Plus model had a better rear camera and bigger battery. Additionally, Apple introduced the world to 3D Touch. The 6S series was released on September 19, 2015.
Apple listens every now and then because apparently, the data showed that many customers missed the 4-inch display. On March 31, 2016, Apple released the iPhone SE. The iPhone SE was basically an iPhone 5S with the internals of an iPhone 6. This was the first Apple phone that had a release so soon after a major model release. The iPhone SE offered a 12 MP rear camera, up to 128 GB of storage, and 1 GB of memory. The iPhone SE did not include Apple’s newly announced 3D Touch feature.
iPhone 7 and 7 Plus
After years of customer complaints, Apple finally decided to make their iPhone dustproof, splashproof, and waterproof but… we lost the headphone jack. Anyway, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus had more differences between the two models. The 7 offered a 12 MP camera and 2 GB of memory while the 7 Plus offered a 12 MP dual-camera system and 3 GB of memory. Also, the storage was finally increased up to 256 GB. The 7 series had a release date of September 16, 2016.
iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus
Hurray, no S series model this year, although…
We now have Qi-based wireless charging! The long-awaited iPhone 8 and 8 Plus were finally introduced on September 12, 2017. The specs of both models lived up to the expectations. The iPhone 8 series changes were breathtaking and the huge advancement made on the 12MP camera. The iPhone 8 Plus does not only boast wide-angle and telephoto cameras; it also boasts a new color filter, deeper pixels, a larger & faster sensor as well as photos and videos optical image stabilization. Even though the form of the iPhone 8 series is the same as the 6 and 7, the 8 series had a new glass body enclosed in an aluminum frame.
Sadly the iPhone 8 series was labeled as a boring release. The reason the iPhone 8 was now the boring phone is that it was released alongside the future ready iPhone X. The iPhone X was destined to be the new flagship model for the iPhone.
iPhone X, the First $1,000 iPhone
The end of Touch ID!
Released alongside the iPhone 8, the iPhone X decided to change things up. We now have Super Retina Display as Apple decided to bump up the screen resolution again, it has about 458 pixels per inch. The iPhone X was the first Apple phone to remove the annoyingly large iPhone bezel. The storage was upgraded to 256 GB, the battery capacity was increased, and the front camera was bumped up to 7 MP.
The iPhone X would be nothing without the front camera. This camera offered a TrueDepth camera that had a f/2.2 aperture, new face detection technology, and the ability to capture 1080p video at 30 frames per second. The powerful front camera was AR-ready, as it allowed Apple to test out their new Animojis, a feature that created animated emojis on top of your face that intelligently reacted to your facial expressions. And yes, the Touch ID was replaced by Face ID. Now you can unlock your phone using your unique face instead of your easy to copy fingers. Seriously though, Apple switching to Face ID greatly increased the security of the iPhone, face scanning security is harder to hack.
The iPhone X was the first Apple phone to cost over $1000 and based on the sales it will not be the last.
Check out this blog post from on iMore to learn more about the history of the iPhone, the first Apple phone.