In the last 12 years the iPhone has decreed the worldwide success of Apple, changing forever the way we use mobile devices. From a simple phone with 2G connection, to a true symbol of the most advanced technologies, all iPhone models have represented a watershed in the evolution of smartphones, forcing other companies to chase the innovations of the Cupertino company. Let's look back at the history of the iPhone, from the first model in 2007 to the latest iPhone XR in 2018.
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iPhone 2G: Apple's first smartphone in 2007
Apple's entry into the smartphone market occurred on June 29, 2007, with the launch of the brand's first advanced iPhone, the iPhone 2G. This phone received a modest response from the public, although it is not comparable with the recent successes achieved by the brand, nevertheless it sanctioned Apple's challenge to smartphones with Android operating system. The iPhone 2G had a memory of 8 to 16 GB, a 3.5-inch display with a resolution of 480×320 pixels, with overall dimensions of 115 mm high by 61 mm wide.
The weight of the iPhone 2G was quite low, about 13 grams, and was equipped with the innovative iOS 3.1.3 operating system. Surely this phone was already an advanced device, however the connection speed was quite limited, also due to the technologies of the time, which were still based on the 2G system. The design was sober and balanced, with some interesting applications, which made it competitive with Android smartphones from Samsung and other brands of these years.
iPhone 3G: new operating system for the model of 2008
The following year, in 2008, the new model of Apple's iPhone is marketed, the 3G, which comes with a completely revised design, while the technical features remain almost the same as the previous version. In fact, the iPhone 3G mounts a 3.5-inch screen with a resolution of 480×320 pixels, for a weight of 133 grams and dimensions of 115.5 mm high by 62.1 mm wide. At the same time, a new operating system, iOS 4.2.1, was introduced, which, together with 3G connectivity, allowed for much faster browsing.
The same year also saw the launch of the App Store, the digital platform from which Apple applications can be downloaded for the iPhone, iPad and all other mobile devices developed by the Cupertino company. This model is more successful among users, sanctioning the final entry of the brand in the smartphone industry, which had large profit margins and was already manifested as one of the most promising in the consumer electronics market.
iPhone 3GS: the evolution of the 3G model
In 2009, models are not released particularly innovative, in fact, Apple released the iPhone 3GS, which, however, has some important technical innovations. First of all, it can be purchased with various iOS operating systems, from version 4.2.1 up to 6.1.6, which guarantees high-level performance. In addition, the third model of Apple's iPhone boasts an advanced display of the latest generation, with a multi-screen system extremely sensitive and efficient.
The technical aspects are not dissimilar from the 2008 model, with a 3.5-inch screen, a weight of 135 grams, dimensions of 115.5 mm high by 62.1 mm wide, memory of 16 or 32 GB and resolution of 480×320 pixels. Unlike previous versions, however, it is compatible with hundreds of applications, a burgeoning market that in the meantime has literally exploded, allowing you to surf the Internet by connecting to the Wi-Fi network and using the 3G HSDPA connection, with download speeds of 7.2 Mbps.
iPhone 4: the history of the iPhone continues
Without too much excitement, indeed with some problems related to the reception system, on June 24, 2010 the iPhone 4 was released, followed by the 4S version. The device has a totally redesigned design, to try to make the iPhone more attractive especially for young people, more and more demanding from this point of view. The launch operating system is the iOS 4 version, however over time came to support up to 7.1.2.
The technical characteristics see a classic 3.5-inch screen, but the resolution had been raised up to 640×960 pixels, with TFT multi-screen capacitive technology and oleophobic coating. The 1420 mAh battery provides up to 300 hours of battery life, while the memory can be a choice of 16 or 32 GB. Size and weight remain unchanged, but appear innovations such as the 5Mpx camera, video recording in High Definition and the ability to make video calls with the FaceTime system.
iPhone 4S: two cameras and plenty of storage space
After a few months after the launch of the iPhone 4 is also released the advanced version, the iPhone 4S, which although it retains the same design of the base model offers many more features and much better performance. On the iPhone 4S come two important innovations, the digital assistant Siri with voice control and iCloud, a set of services SaaS type, Software-as-a-Service, which takes advantage of the newborn cloud computing technology of Apple.
The strengths of the iPhone 4S are the dual core processor A5, HD video recording at 1080 pixels and 30 fps as well as the two advanced cameras, the main one iSight 5-element 8 Mpx and the front camera 0.30 Mpx. The images that this phone takes are up to 30% sharper than smartphones in recent years, in addition, the performance of the new processor ensures a computational speed twice as fast, when compared with that of the latest Android versions.
iPhone 5: one of the lightest and thinnest iPhones from Apple
On September 28, 2012 the iPhone 5, the evolution of the iPhone 4 and especially the 4S version, was launched worldwide. The screen is increased to 4 inches, with resolution arrived at 1136×640 pixels, while the weight decreases to only 112 grams, with dimensions of 123.8 mm high by 58.6 mm wide. The internal memory can be 16, 32 or 64 GB, offering a truly generous space to store photos, videos and documents without resorting to external microSD memories.
Of all the iPhones this is one of the thinnest and lightest models in Apple's history, with advanced Retina display, iOS 6 operating system, compatibility with GPS systems, Wi-Fi connectivity, HD video recording and dual core Apple A6 processor. The 1440 mAh battery provides about 225 hours of battery life, slightly less than previous models. The rear camera is the same as the iPhone 4S, 8 Mpx with autofocus and 5-element structure, while the front camera is increased to 1.20 Mpx.
iPhone 5S and 5C: new processors and slow motion capabilities
The history of the iPhone continues in 2013 with two new models, both evolution of the iPhone 5, the 5S and 5C, launched on September 20. The technical aspects are similar, however the iPhone 5S is the top of Apple's range of the moment, while the 5C lags slightly behind in quality and performance. The iPhone 5S runs the iOS 7 operating system, with Apple's 64-bit dual core A7 processor. The 4-inch screen is the same as the base model, with 640×1136 pixel resolution and capacitive multi-touch display.
For the first time ever, the iPhone 5S has the Touch ID system, now present on all models on the market, to unlock the phone with fingerprints. The battery is slightly longer lasting, with 250 hours of battery life, while the cameras are those of the iPhone 5. The 5C model instead is heavier than the 5S, with 136 grams against 112, available not only in black and white but also in yellow. It is a rugged iPhone with polycarbonate structure, Apple A6 processor, iOS 7 operating system and 8 and 1.20 Mpx cameras.
iPhone 6: Apple's best-selling iPhone released in 2014
With more than 220 million devices sold worldwide to date, the iPhone 6 released on September 9, 2014 is Apple's most commercially successful smartphone, definitively transforming the company into the undisputed leader of high-end smartphones. Available in simple and Plus versions, it mounts the new iOS 8 operating system, with Apple's 64-bit A8 processor, an 1810 mAh battery with 220 hours of battery life, and a total weight of 129 grams.
The 4.7-inch Retina display is slightly curved, with a metal frame that has some torsional issues that users don't like. However, the iPhone 6 is of a very high quality phone, with a resolution of 750×1134 pixels, 8 Mpx iSight main camera with autofocus and 3x digital zoom, responsive screen that automatically adjusts to horizontal and vertical position, Voice over LTE and NFC technology for contactless payments with Apple Pay.
iPhone 6 Plus: the largest iPhone ever
On the same day as the iPhone 6 comes out the 6 Plus version, the largest iPhone ever in the history of Apple, with a 5.5-inch Retina HD screen, Full HD resolution of 1080×1920 pixels and 2915 mAh battery, with 320 hours of battery life. Obviously the operating system and processor are the same as the iPhone 6, while the weight of all this technology comes up to 172 grams, with dimensions of 158 mm high by 77.8 mm wide, almost those of a small tablet.
Also the cameras are the same as the basic version, as well as LTE connection technology, the NFC system for payments with Apple Pay and Touch ID fingerprint detection. However, there are differences besides the screen size, including the new processor that allows you to install an internal memory of up to 128 GB, a design with curved edges and iSight cameras evolved with new sensors, hybrid IR filter and optical stabilizer of the latest generation.
iPhone 6S and 6S Plus: 3D Touch technology and iOS 9 System
In 2015 come the two evolutions of the previous iPhones, the 6S and 6S Plus, marketed on September 9, 2015. The iPhone 6S mounts a new 4.7-inch Retina screen, with a resolution of 750×1334 pixels and 3D Touch system, while the body is made of an ultra-strong aluminum alloy, used in the aerospace industry. The weight is quite low, about 143 grams, with standard dimensions of 138 mm high and 67 mm wide, 1715 mAh battery with 240 hours of battery life, iOS 9 operating system and Apple A9 64-bit processor.
The cameras are completely redesigned, reaching 12 Mpx for the main one and 5 Mpx for the front one, with noise reduction, panning, digital zoom, slow motion and Live Photos, to capture even the moments before and after the shot. The iPhone 6S Plus, on the other hand, offers the usual 5.5-inch screen, Full HD resolution, iSight cameras with 4K video recording and pressure-sensitive display, thanks to the innovative Touch 3D system.
iPhone SE: one of the smallest models and appreciated by the public
In March 2016, before the releases of the new versions of the iPhone 6 and 6S, the iPhone SE was released on the market, a small and compact model particularly liked by Steve Jobs and the public, who clamored for further developments but never realized. This device manages to compress the performance of the iPhone 6, in dimensions of just 123.8 mm high by 58.6 mm wide, with only 113 grams of weight and a 4-inch screen with 640×1136 pixel resolution.
The 1642 mAh battery provides up to 240 hours of battery life, while inside are the 64-bit Apple A9 processor and the iOS 9.3 operating system. The rear camera is the same as the iPhone 6S, with 12 Mpx, 4K video recording and slow motion, but the front camera is reduced to 1.20 Mpx, with sequential shots system and exposure control. Strengths, in addition to size and weight, compatibility with 4G LTE connections, digital calls with Voice over and the integration of support for Wi-Fi data traffic at 443 Mbps.
iPhone 7 and 7 Plus: new cameras and quad core processor
On September 9, 2016, two new models highly anticipated by Apple fans, the iPhone 7 and the 7 Plus version, are distributed in Apple stores. The standard version mounts the new iOS 10 operating system, the latest generation Apple A10 Fusion quad core processor with M10 coprocessor, a display 4.7-inch 750×1334 pixel resolution, Retina display, P3 technology and dual domain pixels. The dimensions are in the norm, 138.3 mm high and 67 mm wide, with a weight of 138 grams and no less than 5 colors available, glossy black, matte black, silver, gold and rose gold.
The 1960 mAh battery is pretty standard, with a maximum battery life of 240 hours, while at the back is mounted a dual 12 Mpx main camera, with Ultra HD video recording in 4K and six-element lens, as well as a 7 Mpx front camera with optical zoom and Retina Flash. The Plus version of the iPhone 7 has the usual 5.5-inch screen, an IP67-certified water-resistant build, Apple's quad core A10 processor, and a Full HD display with optical image stabilization.
iPhone 8 and 8 Plus: little news for the predecessors of the iPhone X
In 2017, the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are launched on the market, certainly two quality high-performance phones, which, however, do not surprise the public increasingly waiting for the iPhone X, marketed a little later. The iPhone 8 features a 4.7-inch screen, with HD resolution of 750×1334 pixels, Touch ID sensor, digital compass and eBeacon technology. The operating system is the new iOS 11, with Apple's 6-core A11 Bionic processor, 64 or 256 GB internal memory, colors in silver, gold and sidereal gray and a weight of 148 grams.
The cameras are also the same as the previous versions, the 12 Mpx rear one with optical image stabilizer, while the 7 Mpx backlit front one has a timer and sequential shooting. The iPhone 8 Plus has the same technical features as the 8, except for the dimensions, 158.4 mm high by 78 mm wide, the weight of 202 grams and the 5.5-inch screen. Both have a new fast charging system, which allows you to have 50% of the charge after less than an hour, but apart from that they are simple updates of the two 2016 models.
iPhone X: new design for Apple's 10th anniversary
The 2017 is also the year of Apple's 10th anniversary, which celebrates its presence in the smartphone industry with the iPhone X, finally a completely new phone and different from previous models. First of all, the 5.85-inch screen occupies almost the entire front surface, thanks to the new ultra-thin edges, reaching a resolution of 1125×2436 pixels truly remarkable, with OLED Retina Super HD display. Operating system and processor instead are the same as the previous models, so iOS 11 and Apple 11 Bionic 64-bit.
However, the new features are different, including the absence of buttons and the presence of the FaceID system, for facial recognition, compatibility with Bluetooth 5.0 connection, fast wireless charging and stereo speakers. Available in only two colors, sidereal gray and silver, the iPhone X weighs 174 grams, with dimensions of 143.6 mm high and 70.9 mm wide, has a 2716 mAh battery with only 60 hours of battery life, a dual rear camera of 12 Mpx and a front camera of 7Mpx, the voice activation system with Hey Siri and the integration of the latest version of Apple Pay.
iPhone XS and XS Max: Apple's 2018 iPhone models
On September 9, 2018, the latest model of the iPhone, the XS, was released on the market, along with the XS Max version. The iPhone XS is a natural evolution of the iPhone X, with a 5.8-inch display, 1125×2434 pixel resolution, iOS 12 operating system, 6-core Apple A12 Bionic processor and quad-core GPU. Internal storage ranges from 64 to 512 GB, while the Super Retina display boasts all-screen technology, which is extremely responsive and interactive, with fingerprint-proof coating, True Tone and 1 million-to-one contrast.
Front, the iPhone XS mounts a dual 12 Mpx camera, with six-element lens, 4K video recording, slow motion and Autofocus, while front, it has a 7 Mpx Retina Flash camera. The iPhone XS Max, on the other hand, has a 6.8-inch display and resolution increased to 1242×2688 pixels, while otherwise it is quite similar to the iPhone XS, except for the weight of 208 grams and the dimensions, 157.5 mm high by 77.4 mm wide.
iPhone XR: Apple's latest model while waiting for new releases
In 2018, Apple's latest iPhone model, the XR, was also presented. It is a device very close to the iPhone XS, however, artificial intelligence technologies have been added, which allow for even sharper photos and ultra-fast charging. The Liquid Retina HD LCD display of the 6.1-inch iPhone XR has a resolution of 828×1792 pixels, with 1400-to-one contrast and Multi Touch all-screen system. The weight is quite high, about 194 grams, with dimensions of 150.9 mm high and 75.7 mm wide.
The operating system is always the iOS 12, with 6-core Apple A12 Bionic processor, with internal memory from 64 to 256 GB, 2942 mAh battery and colors white, coral, black, blue, yellow and product red. The cameras installed are a rear 12 Mpx, with six-element lens, BSI sensor, hybrid IR filter and 4K Ultra HD video recording and a front 7 Mpx, with Full HD video resolution and Retina Flash. Special features of the iPhone XR are wireless charging with Qi charger, which reaches 50% in just 30 minutes, FaceTime video and audio, eBeacon micro-location and screen duplication for multiple app activation.
For now, these are all the iPhone models released so far on the market, waiting for the new phones from Apple, which in 2019 should launch the iPhone XI or 11, with the new iOS 13 operating system. According to rumors it will have three cameras, probably coming up to 14 Mpx, with 3D technology thanks to new sensors from Sony, USB-C connectors and compatibility with 5G connections. However, this is unconfirmed information from the Cupertino company, which should launch the new iPhone in mid-September, barring last-minute unforeseen.