Apple Computer Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs unveiled the highly anticipated iPhone during his opening keynote speech at the annual Macworld Conference & Expo Tuesday in San Francisco. (See video and slideshow of iPhone.)
"This is a day I've been looking forward to for two and a half years," Jobs said. "Every once in a while a revolutionary product comes along that changes everything."
In 1984, said Jobs, Apple introduced the Macintosh, and changed the computer industry. In 2001, Apple introduced the iPod, and changed the entire music industry. "Well, today, we're introducing three revolutionary products of this class," Jobs said. "The first one is a widescreen iPod with touch controls. The second is a revolutionary mobile phone. The third is a breakthrough Internet communications device."
But, he added that "these are not three separate devices. This is one device. And we are calling it iPhone. Today Apple is going to reinvent the phone."
Jobs explained that smartphones provide phone and e-mail and what he called "the baby Internet. They're not so smart and not so easy to use."
"We don't want to do these," he said. "We want to do a leapfrog product that's way smarter than these phones and much easier to use. So we're going to reinvent the phone."
The iPhone does not use a keyboard, nor does it use a stylus, as many smartphones do today. The device uses new technology called "Multitouch."
"We're going to use the best pointing device in our world," said Jobs. "We're born with 10 of them, our fingers."
Multitouch is far more accurate than any touch display, according to Jobs. It ignores unintended touches, supports multifingers gesture. "And boy, have we patented it," he added.
The iPhone runs Mac OS X, said Jobs. "Why would we run such a sophisticated operating system on a mobile device? It's got everything we need," he said. "It's got multitasking, networking, power management, awesome security and the right apps. It's got all the stuff we want. And it's built right in to iPhone. And has let us create desktop-class applications and networking.
IPhone also synchronizes through iTunes. It syncs media, contact information, calendars, photos, notes, bookmarks, e-mail accounts. "All that stuff can be moved over the iPhone completely automatically," Jobs said.
The iPhone features a 3.5-inch, 160 dot-per-inch color screen. There's a small "Home" button on it. It's also remarkably thin -- 11.6 millimeters, thinner than any smartphone out there, according to Jobs.
On one side, the iPhone sports a ring/silent switch, volume up and down controls. On its silver back side is a 2 megapixel digital camera. The bottom features a speaker, microphone and iPod dock connector.