iPhone: January 9, 2007
The phone that started it all. Apple pitched the iPhone as “a revolutionary mobile phone, a widescreen iPod with touch controls, and a breakthrough Internet communications device.” To give you an idea of how far the iPhone has come since its original launch, this first version started at $499, with the initial press release stating the phone was exclusive to the Cingular network, which AT&T had purchased and rebranded as “the new AT&T” just three days after the iPhone was announced.
In September, Apple killed off the $499 model with 4GB of storage and lowered the price of the 8GB model from $599 to $399. Apple fans who had purchased the phone at full price in June when it was first available were irate (to put it mildly), prompting Jobs to write an open letter, offering $100 in Apple Store credit to any early adopters.
Of course, the iPhone has seen several revisions since the first go-around: The 3G version was announced in June 2008, the 3GS followed a year later, the iPhone 4 a year after that, followed by the Verizon version, the white model and, most recently, the iPhone 4S.
Apple TV: January 9, 2007
You’ll forgive the Apple TV for being a wee bit overshadowed by the iPhone, as the two were announced at the same event in early January of 2007.
Apple TV is a set-top box that’s always been positioned as a “hobby” of sorts by Apple: The first version cost $299 and only pulled in content from a nearby computer running iTunes. Before the January unveiling, the product had been demoed as a work in progress—a rare move for Apple—in late 2006 under the “iTV” moniker.
The latest version, unveiled in 2010, shrunk the size of the box down considerably, along with the price tag, while adding additional features such as Netflix streaming and the ability to use the box without iTunes.
iPod Touch: September 5, 2007
Anyone who’s fallen prey to the allure of one or more Apple products remembers the first product that really pushed them over the edge. The iPod Touch did it for me. I was impressed by the iPhone, but its price tag was too high and I was stuck in the early stages of a two-year phone contract at the time it came out. The iPod Touch, though, was unlike anything I’d ever seen: a gorgeous, wafer-thin touchscreen MP3 player? With a Wi-Fi connection? And a web browser? And you could download music directly to it? Sold.
To this day, the first-generation iPod Touch is still one of my favorite gadgets I’ve ever purchased. There was nothing else like it at the time for $299.
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