Infinite Loop: With iPhone, Apple showed AT&T and Verizon who’s boss


Enlarge / A poster announces the arrival of Apple’s iPhone at the AT&T store in Orem, Utah, Monday, June 18, 2007. (credit: Getty Images | Bloomberg)

Ten years ago today—on June 29, 2007—many waited (in line or online) for the first iPhone’s formal release. Apple’s now-signature product has made a lasting mark not only on our communications, but on many unexpected walks of life. This week as the iPhone turns 10, we’re examining its impact and revisiting the device that changed it all.

The first iPhone changed the technology industry in a lot of ways, mostly because it was a great device that lots of people wanted to use. But looking back at the device’s first decade, one of the most beneficial changes the iPhone brought about for consumers didn’t have much to do with the phone itself.

One of Apple’s biggest decisions before releasing the iPhone was to retain control of software updates. Apple gave AT&T exclusive rights to carry the iPhone in the US beginning in 2007 with the phone’s release. But Apple, not AT&T, would be in charge of updating the software.

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