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Happy Fourth Birthday, iPhone!


We've already celebrated the 10th birthday of iTunes today; now it's time to remember the birth of another member of the Apple family.

On January 9, 2007, I was one of the lucky folks who was sitting in the chairs at Moscone West in San Francisco, waiting for the Steve Jobs keynote address for Macworld Expo to kick off. The assembled crowd all knew that some sort of Apple phone was going to be announced, and when Jobs finally waved the phone to the crowd, the place went wild. To me, it was one of the most exciting Macworld Expo moments ever, and I actually have a painting by Nitrozac on my wall that commemorates that announcement.

For the rest of the show, people flocked around a single rotating cylindrical case containing a prototype iPhone, and on June 29, 2007 a lot of us stood in lines at our local Apple Stores to actually get one in hand. We're now in the fourth generation of the device, which has redefined how a "smartphone" should look and act. The App Store opened about a year later (July 10, 2008) and has not only spawned a crowd of lookalikes, but was the impetus for the Mac App Store launched this week.

The youngster has had a few stumbles along the way, but the iPhone is still the phone that everyone else emulates. As of the end of September, 2010, over 73.5 million iPhones had been sold -- that number may be well over 100 million by this point.

Check out video of that historic moment we first saw the iPhone four years ago, after the break.

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