Ten years ago today, Apple co-founder Steve Jobs unveiled what has become the most profitable product ever, and the catalyst for a revolution in the way we communicate and share information.
Standing onstage in San Francisco in his trademark mock-turtleneck, baggy blue jeans, rimless glasses, and New Balance sneakers, Jobs introduced the audience to a gadget he considered to be as revolutionary as the Macintosh computer, the iPod, and anything else the company had ever produced.
Although Apple has changed its views on some of the things Jobs said at the time (he was a stylus skeptic, for example, and Apple now makes a range of mobile products with styluses), it was Jobs’ vision that inspired a family of smartphones that have gone on to sell over 1 billion units in less than a decade. Even as competition has sprung up over the years, Apple’s expensive devices have maintained a strong portion of the smartphone market. A report shared with Quartz from market analytics firm eMarketer indicates that Apple still controls about 44% of the US smartphone market. (The average price for an iPhone has generally been around $600.)
Apple’s most recent phone models have caused some consternation among users and reviewers for being relatively conservative updates, iterating on existing design and providing minor hardware updates. Apple’s profit took a hit because of it, with year-over-year iPhone sales falling for the first time ever in 2016.
Whether Apple can reverse this trend in 2017, without the help of Jobs’ masterful presentation skills or vision, is the crucial question now.
Watch the entirety of Jobs’ 2007 presentation below: