Fortune: Apple’s iPhone an astounding achievement, exceeds technological expectations

“Nearly five months have passed since Steve Jobs unleashed his flashy iPhone upon the world, and the sleek, do-everything gadget has met his ambitious initial sales targets and then some — so far, more than 1.5 million have been sold,” Brent Schlender writes for Fortune.

“And despite all the prelaunch hype and fear mongering, you don’t hear many gripes that the novel, finger-driven user interface doesn’t work, or that videos look crummy, or that the battery doesn’t last long enough,” Schlender writes. “If anything, most of the iPhone’s features have exceeded technological expectations, because in reality, it’s a miniature Macintosh that happens to be a cellphone.”

MacDailyNews Note: The main thing about the ‘iPhone’ is that it’s really a pocket Mac,” – SteveJack, MacDailyNews, Jan. 9, 2007

Schlender continues, “Still, the iPhone frenzy seemed to evaporate more quickly than it built up…”

MacDailyNews Take: Oh, really, now? Looking for some proof of this “frenzy evaporation?” Too bad, you’ll just have to take Brent’s word for it. In the meantime, iPhone, TIME Magazine’s “Invention of the Year,” was greeted with quite the frenzy during its recent successful (according to reputable reports) launches in the UK and Germany, a Google News search for “iPhone” yields 15,891 results in the past week, new iPhone Web apps continue to appear daily for consumers and business users alike, and developers and users alike look forward to iPhone’s SDK debut within a couple of months.

Schlender continues, “…These early days have turned out to be what euphemistically might be called a ‘learning experience’ for everyone involved — the customers, its wireless service provider, and especially Apple.”

Schlender recounts the facts that iPhone rights are granted to exclusive carriers, that some are unlocking the iPhone to work with other carriers, that Apple is combating unlocking (as their deals with the carriers most likely dictate that they do) with software updates and “2 per customer” sales limits, and that Apple reduced the iPhone’s price.

“Despite these rough spots, it’s important to emphasize that the iPhone is an astounding technological achievement, especially considering that something so complex worked so well from the get-go. In more than 25 years of covering the IT industry, I can’t think of a new product that seemed so complete so soon after launch,” Schlender writes. “Jobs may well be right that the iPhone will be as big a deal as the Apple II or the Macintosh, both of which had birthing pains.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Bottom line: the iPhone FUD didn’t stick and Apple deserves praise for getting a 1.0 product so gloriously right. Does Apple have work left to do, of course. However, iPhone is already remarkable and can only get better.

18 Comments

  1. “In more than 25 years of covering the IT industry, I can’t think of a new product that seemed so complete so soon after launch.”

    Must be used to covering Microsoft products. They always seem to be one revision away from getting it right.

  2. As a gag, I created about a hundred 10 second videos for the iPhone – one for each ridiculous sentiment I could imagine.

    It’s a great excuse to whip it out, and flash a quick Belushi, or Murray, expressing some absurdity of life.

    Such fun!

  3. “because in reality, it’s a miniature Macintosh that happens to be a cellphone”

    My exact words after I saw the keynote in January. It’s not a phone + iPod either… The “iPod” feature is actually a computer running iTunes. Or a computer running Google Earth, Mail, etc…

  4. Y’all got it rong. The computers are oversized ifones…the fun fone is Skype on the big mac….but y’all havta turn the bloody screen around all a time ta get the pictures in portrait mode…

    Best iPhone is the 12″ G4 with Skype loaded for phoning around…psst…it’s a secret.

  5. I bought 2 iPhones the first day. One for my wife, who hates technology, and one for me, a geek. We both think it is the greatest thing since sliced bread. It is damn near perfect! Only two improvements I want to see:
    1. Cut and paste ability
    2. Ability to transfer Notes to/from my Mac.
    And these are minor, minor quibbles. This baby is simply going to take over the world. No other company has anything that even remotely competes with the iPhone.

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