When Did The iPhone Actually Become Useful?

The iPhone hit the market in 2007 and revolutionized smartphones as we know them today. The first general iPhone had slew of problems and left users feeling disappointed because of its limited function. Now, in 2016 the iPhone reaches over 10 billion in sales and is now the standard to which all other phones are measured. But, when did the iPhone actually become useful?

The History of the iPhone

Apple iPhone 1st Generation
Apple iPhone (1st Generation)

I was an early adopter to iPhone back in 2008. I was going to get the original iPhone in the summer of 2008, but I waited two weeks unlit the iPhone 3G was released. I got the 8 GB iPhone 3G in white. It was replacing the Motorola SLVR L7 which, at the time was the first phone to have iTunes installed so that you could sync all of your music from your iTunes library. Back then, the original iPhones operating system did not have a formal name like iOS until 2008 public release of iPhone OS 2.0 which was later changed to iOS in 2010. The OS was glitchy and lacking robust features like SMS, MMS, copy and paste, background synchronization, multitasking, etc. Which, meant to the user if you close and app it doesn’t run in the background and you have to re-open the app and reload the data again. This used a ton a battery and was not fun to wait for reloads. Fortunately, with some google searches I found out how to add new features to my iPhone by means of jail break. I had never heard of this term prior to 2008. If you follow a few quick steps, you can load a patch onto the phone that exploits the original OS and allows the use to install an app called Cydia.


Cydia Jailbreak iPhone
Cydia Jailbreak iPhone iOS9

Cydia is a third-party app that did not adhere to App Store guidelines and allows for extension and customizations of the OS. I used Cydia to add the cut-and-paste feature as well as a few other customizations like Black –List which was a call blocker app. This came in very handy for screening calls. Later, Apple would release this feature in iOS6. But, Cydia installers remained strong. Eventually, Apple would go on to fix just about all the crappy things it was missing or did wrong and Cydia was no longer needed or even jailbreaking. The only reason to jailbreak was so that you could use whatever carrier you wanted. That too has been fixed. You can now buy iPhones unlocked at full price for virtually any carrier. However, somehow during each iOS update when did the iPhone actually become useful? In short it hasn’t but, it could be with better integration.

Better Integration of Existing Technology

I proposed this idea back in 2009 to a college. The idea is this: you come into work pull out your iPhone and place it onto a dock. That dock is connected to all your peripherals like, keyboard, mouse, printer, dual monitors, network etc. Cool right? When you want to browse the web, open Chrome, Safari, Firefox etc. When you need to edit a document, open a text editor. When you need to create complex Transact-SQL queries open SQL Server Management Studio. Simple. How is that in 2016 we still don’t have anything close to that? In fact, the market has shifted away from docking stations for laptops and shifted towards tablets. Tablets are portable, convenient, and now very powerful. Well, what about people like me that don’t want to lug around a tablet and prefer using an iPhone as an extension of a desktop computer? If you want to read more about the iPhone check out my article Why the iPhone is Not the Best SmartPhone

Apple MacBook Pro

My Gripes With Apple

Anyone who has recently updated their iPhone to iOS 10 knows what i’m talking about. This update is the worst. I really want to go back to iOS9 if I could. Apple has made that pretty hard because all of your apps need to be the latest version on iOS 10 or they simple won’t work. This is my main point: a lot of people are encountering problems with iOS 10 which, can be incredibly annoying if you rely on your iPhone or iPad every day. So, somehow during the minor iterations of iOS9 the Apple iPhone actually became pretty useful. You didn’t need to have a Desktop or a Laptop to perform everyday functions like email, post messages on Twitter or Facebook, and you could pretty much do anything you wanted. Including running a YouTube channel only using your iPhone like fitness professional Steve Cook (www.stevecookheath.com or YouTube.com/SteveCook).

Steve Cook Fitness stevecookhealth.com
Steve Cook | SteveCookHealth.com

If your interested in rolling back to iOS9 here’s a great article by Matt Hanson

How to uninstall iOS 10 and downgrade to iOS 9


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Cook, S. (2016). About Steve Cook Health. Retrieved from: http://www.stevecookhealth.com/

Hanson, M. (2016). How to uninstall iOS 10 and downgrade to iOS 9. Retreived from: http://www.techradar.com/how-to/phone-and-communications/mobile-phones/how-to-uninstall-ios-10-and-downgrade-to-ios-9-1328740



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