Steve Jobs reportedly worked on upcoming iPhone models (Updated)

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Speaking with San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon, Apple’s government liaison Michael Foulkes suggested that Steve Jobs influenced the design of the next two iPhone models, according to The San Francisco Examiner. Specifically, Foulkes said those designs “precede Tim Cook.”

Apple’s design process typically takes several years on major products like the iPhone, and I suppose it could be true that Jobs had influence over the iPhone 5’s successors. However, a lot of subsequent development has happened since Jobs passed, and I can only assume that the final product will differ from the concepts and ideas that Jobs saw. It’s really not fair to call the next iteration of the iPhone a Steve Jobs design, as attractive as that might be.

When the iPhone 5, the current generation iPods and the EarPods were released, I wondered if they were the last products whose design and function Steve had influenced in a significant way. I can’t say for sure, of course, but I still suspect they are.

Update:I could be wrong.

iTunes was released 12 years ago today

Steve Jobs introduced iTunes 1.0 at Macworld Expo in San Francisco on January 9, 2001. Here’s a video of the keynote presentation. There’s so much that’s interesting about this:

  1. Look at the devices on the screen behind Steve as the video begins. A Rio Mp3 player (I had one of those), a portable CD player, digital camera and a video camera, a Palm device, a Power Mac G4 and whatever that is on the bottom (DVD player?). Four of those items don’t exist anymore, largely because of what Steve’s about to announce.
  2. Steve describes “digital music on computers” to “those not participating in [it].” He then explains what it means to “rip a CD.”
  3. Steve talks about burning CDs. “Everyone is doing it.”
  4. The iPod, still several months away at that point, is conspicuous in its absence. Today, iTunes and Apple’s mobile devices are inextricable.

Lastly, in reference to the digital music revolution as a whole, Steve says, “We’re late to this party but we’re about to do a leapfrog.”

Understatement of the decade.

Brief history of the iPad: Prologue

The story of Apple’s iPad is incredible, especially considering how young the device is. Released in April of 2010, the iPad has redefined and dominated the tablet market (if there even is a tablet market) and spawned a radical change in how tablet devices look and operate.

Of course, Apple didn’t cut the iPad from whole cloth (which probably would have been linen). It was built upon decades of ideas, tests, products and more ideas. Before we explore the iPad’s story, it’s appropriate to consider the tablets and the pen-driven devices that preceded it.

Continue reading →

The brief history of the iPad

This week I’ll launch a new series of posts exploring the brief and incredible history of the iPad. Apple’s tablet is not even four years old (think about that), yet its dominance and influence is global and undeniable. The iPad’s history is so incredible, that I don’t want to wait until it’s 10 years old to explore its journey.

Tomorrow I’ll publish a prologue of sorts and offer a look at the history of tablet and pen computing. It’s going to be fun. Catch you tomorrow.

Spitball

Two stories from Ken Segall’s book Insanely Simple are making the rounds today. One has Steve Jobs considering an ad-supported version of Mac OS 9. The other features an idea to treat the one millionth iMac customer to a Willy Wonka-style tour of the Cupertino campus.

I’m sure Steve thought up all kinds of crazy shit. Jonny Ive even said that he occasionally told Steve, “That’s a whacky idea.”  When you’re spitballing ideas, you toss out every idea you can think of. The vast majority are garbage. Remember that when reading stories like this. Was Steve really going to dress up like Willy Wonka? Maybe. But probably not.