Tags: iPhone | Sales | Records | Apple

Latest iPhone Smashes Sales Records

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Wednesday, 24 Sep 2014 10:20 AM Current | Bio | Archive

During his lifetime, Mark Twain lost over a half-million dollars investing in every oddball innovative invention that came along. One day in 1877, while living in Hartford, Connecticut, Twain was asked by his friend General Hawley to come over to the offices of the local newspaper, the Hartford Courant, where Twain was invited to invest in a device that even he considered “wildcat speculation” — the telephone.
 
Rejecting a stock offer from Alexander Graham Bell himself, Twain and his family set sail for a European vacation on April 10, 1878. Around that time, a local, aging dry goods clerk became fascinated with the idea of the telephone and sank his life savings of $5,000 into stock of the Bell Telephone Company, the predecessor of today’s AT&T.
 
When the Twain family returned to Hartford 14 months later, as Twain later wrote, “. . . one of the first things we saw was that clerk driving around in a sumptuous barouche with liveried servants all over it — and his telephone stock was emptying greenbacks into his premises at such a rate that he had to handle them with a shovel.”
 
Twain wistfully added that, “It is strange the way the ignorant and inexperienced so often and so undeservedly succeed when the informed and the experienced fail.”
 
In 2001, around the time that Palm, Inc., introduced the Kyocera 6035, an early smartphone which combined the functionality of a mobile phone with a Personal Data Assistant (PDA), I spoke of the possible exciting future of the smartphone concept with a Mark Twain-like CEO who was squandering over a million dollars on a website based on a then-intriguing technology that is now in decline.
 
The CEO, much to my surprise, lectured me on why it would be difficult to cram lots of technology into a reasonably-sized cellphone case, and how the telecom infrastructure couldn’t easily be modified to support all of the services to be delivered by smartphones. (His company later went bankrupt.)
 
Today, of course, Apple announced that opening weekend sales of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus have exceeded 10 million, a new record.
 
And to think that, had Motorola done a better job in 2005 with its release of the ROKR E1 (the first mobile phone to handle iTunes), Apple’s Steve Jobs — a man whose spur-of-the-moment temper tantrums could top the Richter Scale readings of contemporaries Bill Gates, Larry Ellison, Steve Bezos, etc. — might not have sworn off such alliances, discontinuing Apple's support for the ROKR and instead announcing Apple’s own smartphone at the January 2007 Macworld.
 
The first iPhone went on sale June 29, 2007, at first exclusively through AT&T. It has survived two class-action lawsuits; a public outcry in September 2007 when the 4GB model was discontinued and the 8GB model’s price was cut by a third; unapproved third-party software, jailbreaking and SIM unlocking; and revelations that American and British intelligence agencies could access iPhone data. The latter public quandary was remedied recently with the iOS 8 release, wherein Apple, in accordance with its new privacy policy, has rejiggered its operating system so that no one but the Apple device’s owner can access user data.
 
Yes, it’s been a long road for the iPhone. Still, despite massive, albeit fragmented competition from the Android world, the ubiquitous iPhone, now apparently evolving into a “phablet” with more square inches of screen real estate, continues to be the archetypal personal communications device.
 
Richard Grigonis is an internationally known technology editor and writer. He was executive editor of Technology Management Corporation’s IP Communications Group of magazines from 2006 to 2009. The author of five books on computers and telecom, including the highly influential Computer Telephony Encyclopedia (2000), he was the chief technical editor of Harry Newton's Computer Telephony magazine (later retitled Communications Convergence after its acquisition by Miller Freeman/CMP Media) from its first year of operation in 1994 until 2003. Read more reports from Richard Grigonis — Click Here Now.
 
 

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Apple announced that opening weekend sales of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus have exceeded 10 million, a new record.
iPhone, Sales, Records, Apple
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2014-20-24
Wednesday, 24 Sep 2014 10:20 AM
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