Tomorrow is the seven year anniversary of my being an iPhone user. (I'm posting this today because tomorrow I plan to discuss Apple's financial call that will take place at the end of the day today.) The original iPhone was released on June 29, 2007, but I didn't get one because it didn't work with the Microsoft Exchange email used at my law firm (and most other large law firms). So instead I continued to use my Palm Treo 650, a device that I really liked for many years but which, by mid-2007, I was eager to replace with an iPhone. Apple added support for Microsoft Exchange in iOS 2, which became available on July 11, 2008, the same day that Apple released the iPhone 3G.
Early in the morning on July 11, 2008, I lined up at my local AT&T store to get an iPhone 3G, but the store ran out of stock of the model that I wanted almost immediately (if they even had any to begin with). So instead I placed my order and waited for notification that my iPhone arrived.
Seven years ago, I received that email on my Treo shortly before lunch, and that was the day that I switched from being a Palm Treo user to an Apple iPhone user:
As a side note, it amuses me to look at that screenshot. For the many years that I used a Treo, that is how all of my emails looked — so very different from what I see on an iPhone today.
But back to 2008. The AT&T store is just a few blocks from my office, so I took an early lunch break, picked up my new iPhone 3G, and started to once again use Apple products in my law practice. (My law firm was an all-Mac firm when I started in 1994, but switched to PCs in the early 2000s, so it had been many years since I had anything with an Apple logo on my desk in my office.)
The iPhone 3G was a great first iPhone. That's when the App Store was brand new, so there were only 500 apps to start (there are over a million in the App Store today), but there was so much potential. Like many attorneys, I looked forward to good legal-specific apps and a good way to work with Microsoft Word documents on the iPhone, both of which of course we have today, but back in 2008 it was just exciting to see all of the new apps coming out. Also, as the name indicates, the iPhone 3G was the first iPhone to use the 3G network, which was so much faster than the Edge network used by the original iPhone. It was also the first iPhone to include GPS.
As I think of how much of an improvement the iPhone 3G was over the original iPhone, it does make me wonder how much Apple will add to the next version of the Apple Watch. Don't get me wrong, I love my current Apple Watch and don't regret buying it at all. But all technology improves over time, and I wonder if the additional features in the 2016 version of the Apple Watch (or whenever the next model comes out) will seem like as big of an improvement (in hardware and software) as the iPhone 3G was over the first generation iPhone.
About four months after I started using my first iPhone, I started iPhone J.D. It is my first iPhone, the iPhone 3G, that appears in the banner at the top of this website. But it all began with that email that appeared on my Treo 650, seven years ago. That Treo still works today, and the email saying that my iPhone is ready is one of the last emails that displays on it.