iPhone

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iPhone

The Apple device that revolutionized mobile computing and caused an explosion of smartphones worldwide. With more than a billion sold in less than a decade, the iPhone has been one of the greatest product success stories in history, catapulting Apple to the world's most valuable company. The iPhone is so popular, especially in the U.S, that it has become a substitute term for any "smartphone," whether an Apple device or not.

The latest models are the iPhone X, 8 and 8 Plus. The iPhone 7, 7 Plus, 6s, 6s Plus and SE are also available. See iPhone versions, iPhone vs. Android, iPhone X, iPhone 8 and iPhone 7.

Quite a Frenzy
No cellphone ever created so much buzz. Enthusiasts camped out overnight to be first in line when it debuted in 2007 even though it was a walled garden with little more than a dozen built-in apps and no expansion. However, in 2008, iPhone app development was opened to third parties, and the App Store took the mobile market by storm. In a few years, more than a million apps became available, and Apple pays billions of dollars in royalties to third-party developers each year. See smartphone.

Apple started the craze, and Android followed, eventually outselling iPhone around the world but not by as wide a margin in the U.S. In addition, Windows Phone and BlackBerry each added innovations to the smartphone paradigm. See how to select a mobile device, mobile compatibility and mobile device vendor control.

Specifications and Data Service
Powered by an ARM processor, the iPhone is a GSM, CDMA or LTE cellphone that uses iOS, a custom version of the Mac OS X operating system with flash storage up to 256GB. iPhones use sealed batteries and must be sent to Apple or a third-party for replacement. Although this Apple-only feature was never popular, non-replaceable batteries have since became the norm in many Android smartphones. See iOS, ARM chips, smartphone features, carrier data plans, iPod, iPod touch, iPad, iBricking and iClone.


The iPhone Home Screen
Pressing the only physical button at the bottom displays the home screen, which is full of icons that launch applications. More screenfuls of apps are revealed when scrolling right. (Image courtesy of Apple Inc.)







Beyond Text
Using high-resolution, graphics-based screens, iPhone apps began to set precedents for attractive presentations, and all smartphones followed. Today's apps are full of pizzazz.







The Apple App Store
In 2008, the App Store revolutionized the mobile world with thousands of iPhone apps being created for the new platform virtually overnight. Later that year, this encyclopedia became available as an iPhone app. See Apple App Store.
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