How The iPhone Rewired Apple
SAN FRANCISCO, California - The iPhone not only changed how consumers communicate and get information, but it transformed Apple into one of the world's most valuable companies.
When Apple co-founder Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone in 2007, he told the audience, "We're going to make some history today." That might have sounded like hyperbole at the time, but in retrospect his pronouncement appears prescient.
Before the iPhone was introduced, Apple relied on iPods and Mac computers for the bulk of its revenue, which stood at about $19 billion in its fiscal year 2006. A decade later, the company's revenue surged more than tenfold, reaching $216 billion, largely thanks to sales from iPhones, which accounted for almost two-thirds of fiscal 2016 sales.
To mark the 10th anniversary of the device, on Tuesday, September 12th, Apple is expected to introduce three new models instead of its typical two.
Apple is providing a live stream on its website, but it will only be viewable on the following devices and browsers:
- iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch with Safari on iOS 9.0 or later.
- Mac with Safari on macOS v10.11 or later.
- PC with Microsoft Edge on Windows 10.
- Apple TV (2nd or 3rd generation) with software 6.2 or later or an Apple TV 4th generation.
"The iPhone has been, and continues to be absolutely everything for Apple," said Clement Thibault, senior analyst at Investing.com. "It is not far-fetched to think that there would be no Apple as we know it if it weren't for the iPhone."
He added, "In fact, it is an absolute certainty that Apple would not be worth in excess of $830 billion, and neither would it be the largest American company by market cap" without the iPhone.
The iPhone not only generated billions in value for Apple and its shareholders, but it's also credited with eroding the market share of its competitors. Blackberry was an early leader with its keyboard-enabled smartphones, leading some well-addicted fans to nickname them "crackberries." But as consumers migrated toward the iPhone and away from Blackberry's devices, the company never again matched its one-time domination.
The iPhone has also changed the way consumers behave and consume media. Americans now spend about five hours a day on mobile devices, according to Flurry Analytics. Much of that time is spent on social media, with Facebook grabbing about 20 percent of consumers' smartphone time.
Americans are also spending more hours texting and messaging, listening to music and playing games, although only a sliver of time is spent on productivity apps, the survey found.
The iPhone's popularity has boosted the likes of Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat, while also spawning countless app developers that create games and services for iPhone owners.