Jony Ive has become an incredible icon since joining Apple. His work is recognized as being some of the most important and recognizable products of the last ten years. iPod, iPhone and MacBooks have all started life on Sir Jonathan’s desk. So important are his designs that it’s lead to him being the recipient of countless awards, and being knighted by the Queen. Let’s just say, he knows what he’s doing with a pencil.
Something I’ve always despaired at on the newest iPhone shape (present since 2010), is the flat, shiny back. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve moaned to someone about it, or turned my dislike in to a frustrated scrawl on this blog. It’s impractical, and feels terrible.
It was designed to look great, and seemingly that was its one and only aim. The glass panel, and chrome Apple logo and FCC notices do look fantastic. But, thanks to it being so slippery and unpleasant to hold, I’ve always got a case or cover on it, taking away from its main purpose. Naked, the iPhone will slip off any surface, no matter how flat. All it takes is one of my kids to run across the floor, and the vibrations will send it despairingly floorwards as gravity has its wicked way with my friction-free smartphone. That plus the sharp, right angled corners mean that it’s nowhere near as pleasant to grip as my old 3GS was.
I’m not sure if the following statement is regarded as a serious enough atrocity to be labelled a confession. However, I never owned the first generation iPhone. When it was launched in the UK, it was hideously expensive and available on a competitor carrier. I worked for T-mobile at the time, and it was only available on O2. So, I never bought one. Until now.
It’s been 5 years since the original iPhone was released, and they’re available pretty cheap on Ebay, so I slapped down £80 and it arrived this morning. Before seeing it in the flesh, I’d seen it as being a little ugly, but in “real life” it looks gorgeous. It’s the best looking iPhone that was ever released – in my opinion. Not only that, it has perfectly rounded edges that make it feel fantastic in hand. Its smooth Aluminum back mean it doesn’t feel anywhere near as plasticcy as the 3G/3GS, or as slippery as the 4/4S.
Currently, I’m in the car driving down to Wales for a family break. But, you can be sure I’ll be bringing you as much comparison coverage as I can get published, to show the differences in design and performance from the original “Jesus Phone” to the current Apple flagship smartphone. And to judge exactly how far the iPhone has come since 2007.
What would you like to see me compare over the next couple of weeks?