Despite Apple not being the first to create and release a smartphone, the decade-old iPhone became wildly popular upon its introduction to cell phone users and managed to drown out the noise of its competitors surprisingly quickly. With this evolutionary new product on the market, many things in the social, marketing, and tech spheres changed.
The first iPhone had some similarities to other smartphones, but its greatest advantage was its ability to easily connect to the internet. These phones were miniature computers packed into communication platforms, which many customers liked. Mobile device users also seldom took pictures before the iPhone, and when they did, they never bothered to edit them much. Apple made it possible for regular people to take high-quality photos and with the help of easy-to-use editing tools and mobile apps, stylize them on a near-professional level. Many would agree that some photos even rival that of your local web design company or photographer. In fact, 85% of the 1.2 trillion photos taken will be taken on phones this year alone.
Apple started the app store trend on its iPhones, which made it easier for software developers to get their products to people who need them. With apps for health, alarms, games, calculators, maps, and much more, the number of apps grew to 2.1 million, and the iPhone became an all-in-one device. Even on-demand work became more common with the implementation of apps like Uber, supplying 4 million US citizens with jobs.
Certain products have experienced a drop in sales due to the iPhone’s popularity. The gum flanking each customer in the checkout line at the grocery store is no longer bought as frequently because customers are preoccupied with their phones while they wait. While gum sales have decreased by 15% over the last decade, media consumption has increased and even taken the place of in-person conversation. The rise of social media and its presence on iPhones has reduced the amount of time people spend interacting with physical media like books.
Advertising underwent a significant change when the iPhone’s popularity soared. Marketing companies big and small began launching their marketing campaigns on Google, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to reach more potential customers. These marketing campaigns became mainstream with the increase in Apple product revenue, which grew from $1.9 billion in profit in 2006 to $45.6 billion in profit in 2016. Nearly two-thirds of the company’s sales were for the iPhone.
It’s hard to imagine now, but Apple wasn’t always a booming success. The company’s most popular product was the iPod and its many versions before the introduction of the far superior 2008 iPhone. With the iPhone’s success, Apple slowly reached a value at least two times higher than most of its competitors. Even though it sells less units than other tech companies like Samsung, its high-quality products can be priced higher and therefore generate more revenue.
The iPhone has affected the world around us more than we realize, perhaps even influencing things like the number of English-speakers worldwide and quiet illegal activity. Every revolutionary product or idea has both positive and negative effects, but in this case, the pros outweigh the cons.