Apple iPhone is revolutionary – Part I

BY Jason

Published 1 Apr 2007

The iPhone is a revolutionary new product, aimed at completely redefining mobile as we know it. Even though I’m still reeling from the excitement, this is probably the biggest thing I’ve seen happen to the mobile industry in the 5+ years I’ve been in it since well… phones.

Apple announced a long rumored, much anticipated, highly coveted mobile phone called the iPhone. Jobs promised to revolutionize mobile phones, and being one to never disappoint the masses, I believe he did.

The iPhone is a revolutionary new product, aimed at completely redefining mobile as we know it. Even though I’m still reeling from the excitement, this is probably the biggest thing I’ve seen happen to the mobile industry in the 5+ years I’ve been in it since well… phones.

The iPhone merges the needs of the user with technology into a very small and very compelling package. Rich with all the features you would expect from a phone, Apple puts its signature on the industry that leaves me spinning. Not one to imitate, Apple has simultaneously revolutionized the mobile device, media player, mobile service provider and mobile web in one masterful stroke.

Of course, like everyone else, I have to wait until June to get my hands on the iPhone, but after the watching the Keynote and reading through the Apple site, here is my analysis of exactly how big the iPhone will be.

Revolutionizing the Mobile Device

The iPhone solves one of the biggest limitations of the mobile device, input and output. The all touch screen interface allowing for multiple finger taps, creates a dynamic user experience allowing for a qwerty keyboard to appear on screen when it is needed, like the Newton, Apple’s first foray into handheld computing.

A touch screen is nothing new in phones, but allowing for multiple taps as well as gesturing for scrolling, resizing, etc, I believe Apple has found an intuitive method of doing complex tasks easily.

But in my mind, bigger than input is the output. The screen on the iPhone is incredible. Text is crisp and clear, with a resolution that is easy to read and use. Mobile phone displays aren’t something that has seen a lot of miracles. Most phones look pretty much the same, resorting for bitmappy text that one comes in two or three sizes. Usually the only difference is brightness. The iPhone makes content on a portable device look comparable to hardest to duplicate screen of them all, a piece of paper.

While these two features are huge, Apple delivered a knock-out in the technology end. The phone has wi-fi, GPRS-Edge for fast over-the-air speeds, Bluetooth for inter-device connectivity. All in a package less than 2.5 inches wide, 4.5 inches tall and .46 inches thick, slimmer than the super hot Motorola Q or the new Cingular/HTC Blackjack.

Jobs mentioned going for existing technologies rather than use 3G networks, which would undoubtedly make the device much bigger. Obviously Apple is betting on ubiquitous wi-fi rather than bleeding edge 3G, which is probably a very good bet at least for the first or second generations.

But the technology didn’t stop there, the iPhone has a number of proximity sensors to detect device rotation and lifting it to your ear, allowing the phone to seamlessly shift between phone and media player just by where you position it. All of this is delivered using Mac OS X natively as the device OS, proving how far the operating system has come in the last six years.

But the none of this compares to the impact the iPhone will have on the mobile market. If you consider the fact that the Motorola RAZR (one of the worst phones ever by the way) redefined mobile devices, consumer
demand and handset form factors, then what impact with the iPhone have? Not doubt it will be BIG!

Industry leaders Nokia, Motorola, Samsung and LG are going to spend years trying to create something that even comes close to competing with the functionality and design of the iPhone.

Revolutionizing the Media Player

Not like the iPod could use much room for improvement, but I can’t ignore that the media functions of the iPhone are very impressive. Given the interesting methods of data control using gestures, the iPhone brings an interesting element to the portable media player that I haven’t seen before, managing your content.

Having a high resolution camera phone myself, I take a lot of photos with my phone. Forget that the iPhone has a 2 megapixel camera for a second, the merger of iPhoto functions on the go brings an interesting dynamic to capturing media lacking from many digital devices, including high end cameras.

Since we never leave home without our phone, the iPhone promises to be the new digital wallet, giving countless proud Dads like myself the ability to show off your personal photos and videos to whoever will bear with your own personal keynote presentation of your life.

While you can’t squeeze a ton of movies on the 4Gb or 8Gb models, it still gives iPhone holders something to do while waiting for the bus or train. After spending close to four years selling mobile content, I can tell you idle time equals huge mobile content consumption. Forget about streaming video over 3G, who needs it when you can sync your iPhone with your iTunes purchases so you always have the latest Daily Show or Cobert Report on your iPhone.

Mobile video has been a much hyping new arena for the mobile industry, with hopes to greatly boost mobile service provider revenues in download fees. Apple has in one step bypassed the extraordinary fees as well as increased the quality offered to consumers. The Apple iPhone/iTunes Music Store strategy could make mobile video finally a reality.

Please do check back later for Part II…

Click here to read Part II of this post.